Greg and Georgie, Grand Designs, Stovax Studio 3
After featuring on Grand Designs, we caught up with Greg and Georgie about how they found it and why the Stovax Studio 3 Freestanding fits so perfectly in their rustic barn conversion.
Greg and Georgie Whitaker, Near Sevenoaks, Kent.
March 25, 2021
Tell us a bit more about your home project.
We set out at the beginning of 2019, to convert a redundant barn in the back of Georgie’s parents garden. At the same time we applied to the Grand Designs TV show, on the off chance they might like to follow our build and so we could tell our story of how surviving brain tumours and cancer had brought us together. (Watch on Channel 4, Season 21, Episode 2) We also wanted to give others hope.
We were both “self build” novices at the beginning, not to mention never been filmed for TV before. But as we quickly slipped into our roles, as project manager, I could use a lot of my skills from managing the pub and relate them into the building side of things.
“You don’t want to run out of beer in a pub, likewise you don’t want to run short of tin for a roof” both will cost you dearly and delay proceedings.
The filming was a new dynamic for everyone, when Kevin was onsite all noisy work had to stop and not a lot of work got done on these days. Although we were taken out for substantial lunches before Covid arrived.
Covid was a tough time and I applied the same rule as beer at the pub and stockpiled materials to get us through the first lockdown and continuing on our own. With the pub being closed I could drop full-time onto the build project.
We knew before we had even started designing the barn that a real fire was a must have feature for our forever home.
As the designs emerged and the vast open plan double hight living area emerged on paper, we realised that everything we were going to put in our new home needed to be big, 1.4 meters wide kind of big!
What fire have you had installed?
We chose a Stovax wood burning stove over a conventional fireplace for several reasons. Mainly because of the high cost of installing a solid chimney, the ease of install, heat control/energy efficiency and how stylish the Stovax Studio 3 looked.
We realised quite early on that we need a stove with a high KW output to really heat a space like ours. I really wanted to reduce our heating costs and with the abundance of wood off the farm and extra insulation hoped we wouldn’t need to run our underfloor heating too much in the winter months.
We have not been disappointed. Before we had the underfloor heating working we were reliant on this 12Kw studio 3 to heat the entire building for a month or so, some nights getting down to minus 5, yet we were toasty and warm. The building would retain heat for 24 hours or more as we had installed extra insulation all round.
What drew you to a Stovax & Gazco product?
The look caught our eye immediately when we were picking the stove. We wanted a modern/industrial look with clean lines and a big viewing screen to be the main focal point in our living room. The Stovax Studio 3 had to be the one and we both fell in love with it after trawling through online internet sites for our dream stove.
I decided to have a go at pouring a board marked concrete fire surround and reinforced concrete bench to sit the stove on. The project was an experiment for many ideas that we wanted to try out and thankfully they came out well.
What’s your favourite spot of your finished home?
We love standing on the balcony in the evening overlooking the main living area taking in the space, your eyes being drawn to the glow of the fire just before bed.
Please note that Stovax & Gazco accept no liability for their installation suitability, safety or building regulations conformance. The images shown on these pages are from real independent homes, many taken before installation is complete, and these form no basis of an installation recommendation by Stovax or Gazco. Please consult the complete installation instructions for your chosen product and consult with an appropriately qualified person for your own installation.
Studio 3 Freestanding Wood Burning Stove
The largest in Stovax’s Studio range is the striking Studio 3 Freestanding Ecodesign wood burning stove. This highly efficient and visually impressive wood burning stove has the same 11kW of heat output and stunning widescreen views of the flames as its inset fire equivalent but offers a very different look. Designed to be sited on ... Find out more