Developing a Grade II Listed building comes with its own unique challenges and rewards, as family-run house builder, Bellis Homes knows well. The company’s team is delighted to have been afforded the opportunity to turn the former Sisters of Charity St Vincent convent, nestled in the Mill Hill Conservation Area and the North Barnet Area of Special Character, into residential accommodation.
The company has nurtured the derelict buildings into 11 apartments and one three-bedroom house, starting a new chapter in the site’s history.
Henry Fordham, Director, Bellis Homes commented: “One of the most interesting aspects of working on a site such as Rosary Manor has been how to present the homes’ interiors. The Grade II listing rightly imposed certain restrictions on the redevelopment process, in order that the character of the original buildings could be retained. We wanted to reflect this internally as well, while also providing a luxurious, contemporary feel. It was a wonderful balancing act that has resulted in the creation of 12 very individual homes.”
The planning phase
With 3.3 hectares of mature grounds, Rosary Manor has a wonderfully countrified feel, despite its London location. Each apartment is unique, with individual proportions fitted to the shape and space available within the original manor house. The planning phase of the redevelopment was intricate, to say the least, with Bellis Homes keen to retain the character of the site while also delivering outstanding contemporary homes.
Upgrading structures that date back to the 17th century to comply with current standards presented a need for serious innovation at times, but the result is a superbly sympathetic redevelopment. Externally, the process has involved careful landscaping to discreetly provide apartments with private areas while retaining the open nature of the landscape. Internally, the design has been all about natural materials and tones.
Henry Fordham continued: “A key focus of the interior design has been to reflect the natural surroundings that Rosary Manor enjoys, while providing a sense of serenity and indulgence. The large, light-filled rooms create a sense of connection with nature that flows throughout the development, ensuring that the interiors are just as unique as the exterior.”
In the kitchens, handmade British Shaker-style kitchens provide a traditional contemporary style that balances the building’s heritage with modern convenience. Bathrooms also reflect this traditional yet modern style. Meanwhile, flooring in the living areas is a mixture of beautiful wooden herringbone and grey planks. This intricate blending of old and new has created an ambience that is historic yet contemporary – an impressive achievement that will serve those who are part of the next phase of the convent’s history well.
Apartments at Rosary Manor are available from £1.1 million to £4 million. For more information, visit www.bellishomes.co.uk.