8.2
308 votes
Grand Designs

Grand Designs

Channel 4 1999

Kevin McCloud follows people as they build their dream house, often focusing on modern design, energy efficiency, maximizing space and views.

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The 10 Best Episodes of Grand Designs

Grand Designs - S9E13

#1 - Revisited (2) - Sussex: The Woodsmans Cottage

10.00

Season 9 - Episode 13

Kevin returns again to see how Ben Law's woodsman's cottage has changed.

The episode was rated #1 Best episode of Grand Designs from 1 votes.

Grand Designs - S5E11

#2 - Carmarthen: The Eco-House

9.50

Season 5 - Episode 11

Andrew and Lowri Davies embark on a project to build an environmentally friendly farmhouse in rural Wales. Encouraged by their architect, they opt for some state-of-the-art experimental building materials; but do their builders know how to use them? As the budget spirals out of control, they find it increasingly difficult to balance the budget with their desire for a sustainable home.

The episode was rated #2 Best episode of Grand Designs from 2 votes.

Grand Designs - S8E10

#3 - Surrey: The Victorian Threshing Barn: Revisited

9.00

Season 8 - Episode 10

Kevin McCloud revisits Philip Trail and his wife Angela who moved to stress-free Surrey and renovated a 150-year-old threshing barn after Philip was diagnosed with a brain tumour.

The episode was rated #3 Best episode of Grand Designs from 1 votes.

Grand Designs - S11E10

#4 - Revisited - Ashford: Water Tower Conversion

8.50

Season 11 - Episode 10

Kevin revisits Denise and Bruno Del Tufo who six years ago set about transforming a concrete water tower in their back garden into an avant-garde contemporary home.

The episode was rated #4 Best episode of Grand Designs from 2 votes.

Grand Designs - S3E15

#5 - Revisited (2) - Sussex: The Woodsmans Cottage

8.38

Season 3 - Episode 15

Kevin returns again to see how Ben Law's woodsman's cottage has changed.

The episode was rated #5 Best episode of Grand Designs from 8 votes.

Grand Designs - S13E6

#6 - Monmouthshire: The Japanese House

8.30

Season 13 - Episode 6

Tamayo Hussey's missed Japan ever since she moved to the UK with her husband Nigel. To stave off the homesickness they've decided to transform a forester's lodge into a Japanese house complete with roof bath, tatami room and sliding paper walls. Keen to keep costs under control, Nigel and Tamayo decide to engage only the design skills of an architect and with no previous building experience they bravely go it alone, working without any detailed drawings and fire-fighting problems every step of the way. The wood they're using for the timber frame - Japanese larch - hasn't been used for building houses before in the UK, so no one can be sure it will be strong enough, the new interior walls don't meet properly and the replacement window design can't cope with the rain. But Nigel and Tamayo are determined to overcome any obstacle to get the Japanese house they're so desperate for.

The episode was rated #6 Best episode of Grand Designs from 79 votes.

Grand Designs - S7E1

#7 - Yorkshire: The 14th Century Castle

8.30

Season 7 - Episode 1

Every Englishman’s home is his castle but for Francis Shaw this is quite literally true. He and his wife, Karen, and their two young daughters, bought the ruins of a 14th Century castle in Yorkshire and took on the remarkable challenge of turning a pile of stones into a beautiful home. Surrounded by rolling green fields, the location is idyllic; however, the castle itself was little more than four crumbling walls.

The episode was rated #7 Best episode of Grand Designs from 30 votes.

Grand Designs - S7E12

#8 - London: The Glass & Timber House

8.30

Season 7 - Episode 12

In this episode Kevin meets master carpenter Bill Bradley and his wife Sarah, whose plan is to build two identical timber houses in south London, selling one to finance the building of the other.

The episode was rated #8 Best episode of Grand Designs from 10 votes.

Grand Designs - S9E4

#9 - Weald of Kent: Arched Eco House

8.27

Season 9 - Episode 4

Kevin McCloud follows the progress of architect Richard Hawkes and wife Sophie, who are moving from London to the Kent countryside to build a hi-tech eco-friendly house with room to grow their own food. Richard also wants their new home to blend effortlessly into the surrounding countryside, concealed beneath a huge arch of clay tiles covered with earth and planted with grass

The episode was rated #9 Best episode of Grand Designs from 37 votes.

Grand Designs - S7E11

#10 - Tuscany: The Tuscan Castle: Revisited

8.26

Season 7 - Episode 11

Kevin McCloud meets a couple who bought a ruin and moved to Italy in 1999, hoping to start work building their dream home in Tuscany. Since then they've spent all their time trying to get planning permission, but finally, after four years, they are about to start work. And it's an epic project: they have bought a derelict 1,000-year-old castle in the Tuscan hills. Now, the couple face their biggest battle of all: rebuilding this massive ruin into a comfortable and luxurious five-bedroom home.

The episode was rated #10 Best episode of Grand Designs from 19 votes.

#11 - London: The Derelict Water Tower
8.23
Season 12 - Episode 5

Kevin McCloud marks the 100th episode with one of the programme's most ambitious projects to date. Leigh Osborne and Graham Voce want to convert and extend a landmark 150-year-old water tower in central London into a luxury home. Grade II-listed, derelict and with 6ft-thick walls, it's a huge challenge for the pair, who also plan to build two structures at the base - a lift shaft connected by a series of glass tunnels, and a modern living space. The result will be a four-bedroom property over nine floors, complete with a room at the top offering spectacular 360 degree views across the capital. The tower, which is located directly above London Underground's Northern Line, was originally built for Lambeth Workhouse in 1877 and became a Grade II listed building in 2008.

The episode was rated #1 Best episode of Grand Designs from 82 votes.

#12 - South Cornwall: Steam Bending House
8.19
Season 17 - Episode 3

Kevin McCloud meets Tom and Danielle Raffield, whose lifelong passion has been steam-bending wood. They've used the technique to create extraordinary furniture and lighting, but now plan to use it on a larger scale. In an attempt to escape the confines of their tiny gamekeeper's lodge, they have decided to build a wavy wooden house in South Cornwall, completed with curved cladding, twisted furniture and interior walls covered with weathered timber. With a £100,000 budget, the pair have decided to do a lot of the building themselves, and Kevin is on hand to discover whether they're up to the challenge.

The episode was rated #2 Best episode of Grand Designs from 233 votes.

#13 - Les Gets: 300 Year Old Chalet: Revisited
8.19
Season 6 - Episode 6

Kevin McCloud revisits Nicky and James Dobree. Nicky was raised in France, James in Beirut – both have fond memories of the mountains as children. So it was natural for them to one day look to buy a place amongst France's tallest peaks, the Alps. The journey moving the family, including their two young sons, Fabian and Felix, from South London to a renovated 300-year-old farmhouse in Les Gets was to have its ups and downs. It was never meant to be a permanent move. The original plan was to develop the top two floors of the chalet so the family could spend the summer there, overseeing the completion of the bottom floors. They would then be able to rent our the whole chalet in the winter months. The family were only planning to use their new home for the summer seasons.

The episode was rated #3 Best episode of Grand Designs from 16 votes.

#14 - County Londonderry: The Shipping Containers House
8.12
Season 14 - Episode 4

A young farmer and architect in Northern Ireland hopes to make a home out of four large shipping containers welded together to form a giant cross. Patrick Bradley has come up with a £100k house design to be built out of four 45-foot shipping containers, welded together to form a giant cross and cantilevered over the top of a stream at a beautiful secluded spot on the family farm. His mum is hoping his new home will get Patrick a girlfriend. But his tiny budget is soon under threat.

The episode was rated #4 Best episode of Grand Designs from 127 votes.

#15 - Revisited - Lake District: The Dome House
8.06
Season 11 - Episode 8

Kevin revisits Robert and Milla a year after their ambitious Lake District eco home seemed on the verge of running out of money. Have the couple completed their visionary timber home?

The episode was rated #5 Best episode of Grand Designs from 33 votes.

Grand Designs - S11E7
#16 - London: The Disco Home
8.03
Season 11 - Episode 7

Claire and Ian try to build a home big enough for a disco on a small plot at the end of a London mews. But as angry locals begin to object to their plans, things start to go awry.

The episode was rated #6 Best episode of Grand Designs from 31 votes.

#17 - Marlow: The Floating House
8.01
Season 14 - Episode 7

Andy and Nicki Bruce try to build an experimental flood-proof floating house on an island in the River Thames. But building such a complex design on a site with limited access is not easy. Andy and Nicki Bruce's amphibious house, the first of its kind in the UK. Their architect has come up with an ambitious, experimental design that has never been tried on a river bank in Britain and no one knows whether it will work. The Bruces decide to build on a site on a small island in the river. But it's not long before the project becomes bogged down in the logistical challenges of building such a complex design on a small island that is only accessible by a narrow footbridge.

The episode was rated #7 Best episode of Grand Designs from 94 votes.

#18 - Wales: The Isolated Cottage: Revisited
8.00
Season 2 - Episode 14

Kevin McCloud re-visits Adrian and Corrina, who decided their first home was to be a 300-year-old ruin. The former cottage is set in the inhospitable climate of the Brecon Beacons National Park.

The episode was rated #8 Best episode of Grand Designs from 1 votes.

#19 - London: The Dilapidated Georgian House: Revisited
8.00
Season 2 - Episode 15

Kevin McCloud revisits Sharon and Tony Relph a couple who hoped to restore a dilapidated Georgian house in London to its former glory. Once 200 years of redecoration and refurbishment had been stripped away, the property boasted elegant period features, but the pair still had to overcome daunting interior decay problems.

The episode was rated #9 Best episode of Grand Designs from 1 votes.

#20 - Amersham: The Water Tower: Revisited
8.00
Season 2 - Episode 16

Kevin is in Amersham to update on a project taken on by Deborah and architect Andrew. Their venture involved designing an 'invisible' house that blended in with the surrounding reservoirs.

The episode was rated #10 Best episode of Grand Designs from 1 votes.

Last updated: apr 15, 2021

Comments

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Love this show, Kevin is a brilliant presenter who is both engaging and passionate about good architecture. His commentary and philosophy of building concentrate on sustainability and good design where he holds the self builders frequently to account.

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