Pitch Perfect

Architect James Bernard from Plus Rooms shares how a flat roof extension with wraparound glazing maximises space  

The Problem The original kitchen was cramped with limited space for the owners to cook or entertain guests.


The Solution ‘We extended at the rear and into the side return to create a wraparound extension,’ explained architect James Bernard, director of Plus Rooms, ‘which involved moving the existing cloakroom in line with the stairs for a new utility room. Instead of a large opening onto the garden, we fitted a separate steel-framed door and windows to help regulate traffic flow. The newly landscapes patio and garden has now become a natural continuation of the kitchen / dining room. The homeowners were keen to have a continuous glass ceiling so we created a pitch flat roof with sloped glazing, which opens the area up to the sky. The steel-framed glazing and exposed steel beams add a sleek and industrial accent to the room. Exposed brickwork paired with a herringbone flooring gives the new extension warmth, while perfectly balancing detail and simplicity. The build took either weeks before the kitchen and flooring were added. Now, the garden feels more connected to the house, creating a wonderful atmosphere inside and out’.

The herringbone floor adds a strong geometric element to the room that is softened by the timber, contrasting with the sharp lines of the ceiling support beam and pitched glazed roof

Home Notes:

  • Homeowners – Loella and George Collier. They have one child and work in investment and advertising
  • Property – A five-bedroom terraced house in south east London
  • Architect – James Bernard of Plus Rooms (plusrooms.co.uk)
  • Builders – Plus Rooms (plusrooms.co.uk)
  • TOTAL COST – £90,000 (construction only – not including kitchen, cloakroom, flooring and decor(

Exposed Brick Walls

Architect James Bernard gives us the lowdown


An exposed brick wall is a great way to add character and it brings a lot of detail to the room, but keep it in context as too much and it starts to look busy. As a rule of thumb, use about 30-40% of the overall amount of wall space for the best effect.


Aim to place an exposed brick wall on the opposite side to the entrance of the space, in order to create the maximum impact.


Running a continuous exposed brick wall from your inside space into your garden makes a great design feature. It will carry your eye through the house and out to the garden so you’ll feel like the space extends outside.


Reclaimed yellow bricks lend themselves best for this because of their texturing and the variety of colours they hold. You’ll have walls that have more characters, and this will really shine through int he overall atmosphere of the room. Brick slips are a great way to achieve this effect.


Keep in mind that an original brick wall left unsealed may have moisture coming through, which can cause white marks and ruin the overall effect, so make sure that it’s property sealed during the works.

Zoning the kitchen and dining areas ensures the space doesn’t feel cavernous

‘Remember overheating has to be a consideration with glass roofs, as a south facing glass room would be much hotter than north facing in summer’.

Including a glass roof creates a great sense of freedom and connection to the outside

James Bernard, Director of Plus Rooms