Grand Designs is a Channel 4 TV series covering unusual architectural house-building projects, presented by Kevin McCloud and produced by Talkback. The properties featured in the series vary wildly from homes underground to converted water towers, with the only common factor being that they're all rather unusual or extravagant in some way.
Kevin McCloud meets Spanish architect Jaime and his wife Mimi as they embark on a mission to convert a Grade II listed folly into a family home in Buckinghamshire. Giving themselves a wildly optimistic six month deadline to finish before the birth of their second child, it's not long before the couple hit trouble. Jaime puts all his energies and creativity into the project, using innovative 3D mapping to squeeze living spaces into the tower, but it proves to be an exhausting struggle.
Kevin McCloud meets Harry and Briony Anscombe, who have decided to move from London to Cornwall with their three young children and begin building work on an ambitious house, inspired by American modernist properties. With a budget of just £400,000, Harry opts to project manage himself, paying local builders by the hour, but his lack of experience in construction proves to be problematic.
Kevin McCloud returns to Devon for an update on one of the most inspirational builds he has ever witnessed. Marine Captain Jon White and wife Becky were living happily in a small cottage in Devon when in June 2010, while serving in Afghanistan, Jon stepped on an improvised explosive device. Jon lost both legs and his right arm. Every part of his and Becky's lives had to change - starting with where they could live. Their architect came up with a cutting edge, semi open plan building with a dramatic wing-like-roof; but crucially it was to be without noticeable adaptations for Jon's disabilities. It was an ambitious design, and despite the help of a number of military charities and a capable team of builders, Jon was already under severe pressure to finish the house, when news came that Becky was pregnant. Has the new home proved as enabling for Jon, Becky and their expanding family as they'd hoped?