Students design a new home

Competition winners Rhiannon Wheatley, Cailey Thompson and Millie Johnson with Neil Kempster, Chestnut Homes' land and development director
Competition winners Rhiannon Wheatley, Cailey Thompson and Millie Johnson with Neil Kempster, Chestnut Homes' land and development director

Pupils at John Spendluffe Technology College in Alford were challenged to design a new house for a competition run by Chestnut Homes.

The county developer set pupils a challenge to design a property which would be suitable to be built at Willoughby Chase, the Chestnut Homes development which is being built off Willoughby Road in Alford.

Pupils were asked to explain their design and give details of the proposed layout of their property. They were also asked to consider who they thought would live in it and how much it would sell for.

Rhiannon Wheatley was named the winner for her design for an eco-friendly house. Rhiannon’s property included solar panels to harness energy and a striking glass frontage, designed to allow plenty of natural light in and reduce the need for the lights to be switched on.

She wrote in her entry that as the demand for eco-friendly housing was “steadily increasing”, her property’s eco-friendly credentials would make it an attractive prospect to potential buyers.

Cailey Thompson was named runner-up for her design, a bungalow with adaptations to make life easier for elderly residents.

She wrote: “I designed this bungalow to give the elderly the freedom they need. I have tried to remove many of the hazards in the house.”

Millie Johnson won third place for her design for a sustainable four-bedroom family home, which included a water butt to save and recycle rain water, as well as solar panels.

The three winners received Amazon gift vouchers.

Chestnut Homes set the competition for the students when they visited Willoughby Chase in November as part of their research for a GCSE geography project.

Chestnut Homes director Robert Newton said: “We had a really good visit from the John Spendluffe students and afterwards, they went away with our design challenge and it’s obvious to us that they’ve given it a lot of thought.

“We were impressed by their work and decided that Rhiannon, Cailey and Millie’s homes would be the most viable if we were to build them for real.

“Rhiannon and Millie’s focus on creating an eco-home was right on the mark, as energy efficiency is a big priority for modern housebuilders and is something which we always strive to incorporate into our home designs.

“Cailey’s bungalow design was also spot on, as we build bungalows at a number of our developments, including Willoughby Chase, and we always find that they are popular.

“It was great to meet the John Spendluffe students when they visited us, and I’d like to thank them for their excellent competition entries.”

Chestnut Homes is building a total of 106 homes at Willoughby Chase, which is located to the south of Alford off Willoughby Road.