Renovation specialist Newton Fraser was brought in to renovate this Utility Room in Nottingham and installed a cloakroom toilet, a custom wardrobe, and ceramic tiling!
WORDS Raul Sharma
Homeowners David and Jenny wanted to make the most of their utility room and decided to bring in Refresh’s Newton Fraser to help them out. They lived in a detached house in a small town and explained that they wished to completely overhaul their 4.5m2 utility space.
Building regulations approval
Newton started by getting Building Regulations approval on behalf of the clients. The consent process can often be a complicated one, so the homeowners were happy to not have to deal with it.
Utility room renovation
“In order to make this work, we needed to relocate the external rear door,” Newton explains. “The door was a classic stable type and we had to keep the existing frame, if possible. However, upon removing the frame, it was found to be completely rotten, which means it couldn’t be reused. So we created a new frame from scratch. The old frame also formed part of the side window, so a decision was made to install a new window frame and window as well.”
Knowing the importance of keeping things sustainable and within a client’s budget, the bricks gathered from cutting a new hole in the wall were later reused to fill the old doorway and maintain the original look of the home’s exterior. However, this required each individual brick to be ‘toothed’ out so that they would remain preserved. Although this was more time consuming, it enabled the finish to look like it was always a wall and not a doorway!
Newton and his team proceeded to create a new hole for the door so that they could block up the old hole and create the space needed to install a small cloakroom. The location was also critical to allow the installation of a new soil pipe on the outside of the building.
When asked about any challenges during the project, Newton reveals “We found that the existing waste pipe along the side of the house was too close to the building, which meant the new soil stack couldn’t be installed as planned. Therefore, the new toilet waste required an inventive solution. We decided to install shallow angled pipes to maintain free flow without creating narrow angled corners that would create blockages. We consulted with our Building Control consultants and they fully backed our decision.”
“We also constructed two full-height cabinets to hide the boiler and washing machine, which provided added storage space,” Newton elaborates. “The design was crucial in ensuring the appliances and boiler fit within the cabinet while not impacting the location of the new toilet wall and making it too narrow. An initial design was drawn up but the execution was left to the very experienced joiner to adjust as needed.”
The homeowners also wanted the floors to be fully tiled and all the walls decorated, which became Newton’s next priority. Late in the process, they were so in love with the bespoke cabinets Refresh created, that they decided to paint one of the walls green to match them!
“The homeowners also wanted the option to leave an area where their cats could eat,” Newton says when asked about interesting features. “So we designed the doors to be easily detached or keep partly open for the cats and they could be easily reinstalled whenever needed.”
The final result
Asked about his experience, Newton says “The clients were heavily involved in the selection process and even sourced some of the materials that they wanted us to incorporate into the design and installation.”
With the oak window frame, bespoke MDF cupboards, beautiful patterned ceramic floor tiles, and a fresh coat of paint, the space had been completely transformed.
“I personally really liked the bespoke floor to ceiling cupboards we designed,” reveals Newton. “Another favourite aspect of mine was the style of floor tiles selected by the clients. Both of them were really helpful and got on well with the contractors!”
If you would like to get started on your own renovation project, get in touch with a Refresh renovation specialist today for a completely free consultation!