Caring Wood

A design for a new family house at Caring Wood, located within an 83 acre woodland site in the historic Parishes of Leeds & Otham near Maidstone Kent.

Caring Wood 1
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This new one-off dwelling in the open countryside is judged on exceptional quality and innovative design, requiring it to be truly outstanding and groundbreaking. This is set out in PPS7, which now forms part of the National Planning Policy Framework.

Constructed using the latest advances in technology, a poured reinforced concrete frame and cross-laminated timber shell, which enables it to satisfy code 6 building requirements. The house is anchored into the ground with the lower half of the structure sunken beneath ground level. This complex and ambitious structure unusually adapted for much larger scale developments is unprecedented at this scale.

The design form of Caring Wood has strikingly modern sculptural geometry and draws upon Kentish building traditions and the use of local crafts, it’s exterior clad in traditional Kent tiles and ragstone. The design proposes a fully sustainable country estate designed to respond to future climate change.

This project is now on site, estimated completion 2015.

Services provided

Project management of Enabling Works from planning through to practical completion of Civil Engineering and Reinforced Concrete Frame contract, plus procurement of Main Contract for the buildings.

McLennan did an excellent job in efficiently and effectively managing the procurement of construction contracts and the infrastructure on site working very closely with the design team and other consultants.

Andrew Crompton. Client representative

McLennan were selected to work with us on the Caring Wood project due to their experience in the arts sector. They provided the level of support and sensitivity required to deliver this complex project, managing a multi layered client body, a diverse consultant team, a code 6 construction and a phased contract.

Niall Maxwell, Director Rural office for Architecture

I worked with Alex when he project managed the construction of the structural elements (ground works, concrete and timber elements) of Caring Wood. The project had many complications including a steeply sloping site, complicated structure and various interdependent contracts.  Alex drove the project forward with a great attitude. When issues arose on site he ensured they were promptly dealt with, he was a pleasure to work with. 

Tim Marcot, Project Engineer Price & Myers


2012 - 2014


Private House

Project Team
Architects: Rural Office for Architecture in collaboration with Macdonald Wright Architects
Structural and Infrastructure Engineers: Price and Myers
M&E Services Engineers: Synergy
Acoustic engineer: Neill Woodger

Hague Construction

Construction value of Enabling Works

March 2014