Guest builds house on flood plain in new Grand Designs
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This week’s episode of Grand Designs will see presenter Kevin McCloud follow former East End boxer and advertising man Geoff Wood’s unusual project. The 63-year-old planned to build a cantilevered steel-framed house on a windy flood plain on the Essex coast beside the Blackwater Estuary. To fund the project, he is selling his luxury villa in Spain and moving into a caravan on the project site.
Costing £700,000 the project will see the building raised 4.5 metres above the ground so that it’s protected from rising sea levels.
Geoff said in a trailer for tonight’s episode: “Because it’s on a flood plain, it’s built to withstand a once-in-a-thousand-year flood.”
The difficult build is runs into a major setback when, with almost £200,000 worth of metal and concrete in the found, the Spanish property market collapses in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
The pandemic and the ensuing property crisis threatens the sale of Geoff’s Spanish villa which is funding the project.
As the stakes are raised, there are concerns as to whether the project will be completed.
In a trailer for the show, presenter Kevin said building a home can make people “stressed”.
However Geoff seemed unfazed by this, claiming “I love the stress”.
“I’m looking forward to it,” he added.
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One of the project’s builders said the home is completely unique with nothing ever being built like it.
The builder said: “It’s a big cantilever. No one’s ever built anything like this.
“Unfortunately, Geoff hasn’t got the knowledge to do a job of this magnitude.”
Despite Geoff’s confidence, viewers can see the homeowner despairing over how long the project is taking.
“It’s going on and on and on,” he said.
At one point he asks, “why did I do this?”
But even though the project ran into some setbacks, the finished design looks slick and modern with stunning views.
Photos of the finished home reveal an open plan kitchen/living room with marble worktops and wooden floors.
A black breakfast bar with white worktops and a sink in the centre is the perfect setting for socialising.
Geoff has decorated the interior with houseplants, wooden furnishings, pink walls and blue carpets.
Grand Designs, Wednesdays at 9pm, on Channel 4.
Episodes are also available to stream via All 4.
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