Debbie and Mark had always been keen swimmers and when Debbie was recovering from cancer, swimming was the one activity recommended by doctors as water supports overall body weight and gives a full workout without too much strain on the joints and bones.
Debbie and Mark knew they wanted something they could enjoy all year round and be an enhancement on the leisure facilities afforded to them by their garden and views in the summer.
“We wanted as big a pool as we could get, and were really keen on having as many bi-fold doors as possible in order to open them up and effectively have an outdoor pool in the summer. We also wanted to be able to sit on the terrace while watching the sun go down and enjoy our outside space. It’s the perfect situation for us as we get the best of both worlds, an indoor pool but with the capacity to become an ‘outdoor’ pool in the summer months. Swimming all year round was essential for us so an outdoor pool was never going to be a good fit as Debbie needs to be able to swim only in warm water due to her recovery.”
“Our brief for Origin came in two parts, the health side requested being able to swim all year round and the leisure side said we want to be able to sit round the pool with a G&T and watch the sun go down in the evening. The pool is ultimately for us to enjoy but of course we let the grandchildren have fun as well!”
The planning and building of Debbie and Mark’s dream pool however, didn’t come without its challenges. The location of their house is in a protected area and the house itself is Grade 2 listed so the pool house needed to be freestanding. Access was the biggest challenge of the project as the main access points were blocked by a beech hedge and Debbie’s studio. Origin came up with a solution to build a bank with soil from the initial dig over a low brick wall at the end of the garden which ended up working perfectly. The location for the pool house proved to be quite straight forward however.
“At no point did Origin say it wouldn’t work, they were great at overcoming the challenge and coming up with creative solutions. Luckily, we had no issues with the pool house planning as we left a metre gap between the new build elements and the existing wall of a listed building”
“The positioning of the pool is pretty much where we wanted it from the start, it’s the only site we could ever see working. We love that it’s slightly raised up, we had a terrace there before and we wanted to turn it into the ‘leisure terrace’ and walk from there into the pool, that way we’d also have an amazing view of the garden and church tower, it really is quite special.”
Debbie and Mark’s home, an old listed building in a rural setting, is heated by an oil boiler. The listed building status did make moving to a greener energy source complex as upgrading insulation levels in the floor and walls or replacing the windows was not allowed. However, they were determined that the addition of the pool house should be as environmentally friendly as possible with minimum ongoing Co² but within their budget. A number of solutions were considered; we compared capital costs, ongoing running costs and Co² emissions for each and a Hybrid solution was selected. This included an air source heat pump to heat the pool water all year round (giving an average of 3.5 kw of heating for every 1 kw of electricity used) and electric air heating (pool water heating being the greater demand). The solution enabled Debbie and Mark to entirely power their indoor pool using a 100% sustainable green energy supplier and dramatically reduce their Co² emissions.
“This part of the build was challenging for Origin as it did require them to think outside of the box in terms of options that could tick all the boxes but the solution of an air source heat pump works for us and the environment so it’s a win-win situation.”
“We found Origin via google and were talking to three different companies to start with, we knew we wanted one company that did it all and Origin fit the brief. It’s surprising how few pool companies do everything and thankfully Origin is one of them, not only do they do it all but they do it well. After my initial contact, everything was very fast and efficient, they were quick to ensure I had an up to date brochure and any information I needed. They were on the ball and that ended up being one of the reasons we went with Origin, they set a good precedent for themselves from the get go.”
“Origin, as a company, do what they say they will. You will always hear from them and that is key in putting your trust in a business. We did end up spending more than anticipated (as with anything) but we regard it to be well spent. The ‘business aspect’ of Origin works extremely well, they are so thorough in their quotes and breakdowns, it preemptively removes a lot of stress as you know exactly where you are in the process and have everything laid out in front of you.”