Transforming The Wickes’ 1980s house in to a 21st Century home

It was the lovely big garden, long private drive and peaceful surrounding farmlands that attracted Elizabeth and Matthew Wickes to their new home in Suffolk in the summer of 2013.

However, in order to turn the property into a home their family could be proud of; The Wickes, who have two children, Emily, 6, and Sebastian, 4, knew they’d need to do considerable renovations to the four-bedroom detached house.

As well as removing walls and replacing the entire central heating system, the couple made plans for the vast space at the back of the house. After consulting with local builders, SJ Design and Build Limited and architects at Wright Ruffell Cameron architectural design service, the Wickes embarked on a sizeable single-storey extension to create an extra living space for their family.

With plans for the extension well on their way, Elizabeth, who has a keen interest in interior design; particularly Scandinavian styles, took to the popular social platform Pinterest, to get inspiration for the layout and design of their new space. It was there that she happened to click on a picture featuring VELUX INTEGRA® roof windows and quickly found herself on the VELUX website looking at a competition to win up to four roof windows and £1,000 worth of John Lewis vouchers.

The competition was part of a wider extensions campaign to inspire and support homeowners with practical tips, advice and tools to help them create their dream single-storey extension with VELUX roof windows, which can let in twice as much daylight as vertical windows of the same size.

It was perfect timing – for entering and later, winning the competition. The four VELUX INTEGRA® roof windows meant The Wickes could create a multi-purpose, open plan family space and kitchen and dining area that would be flooded with natural light.


Opting for a Scandinavian-inspired interior design once the build was complete, has achieved the look Elizabeth and Matthew wanted to achieve – “a family space that’s a bit more adult!” as Matthew put it. The space has been decorated with lots of whites, woods and simple designs in keeping with current trends in Scandinavia.

Along with their electric powered roof windows, The Wickes invested in an underfloor heating system in the kitchen and dining area to make sure their new space is SMART and cosy during the winter months. The inbuilt rain sensors in the roof windows means that there is no risk of rain coming into the space as the sensors automatically close the windows when it rains.

Elizabeth was particularly impressed with this feature during the summer months, she explains: “During the summer holidays we were always out and about on family adventures but you can’t always rely on the British weather! So it was fantastic knowing we could leave the windows open and not have to worry if it rained. The sensors worked flawlessly each and every time.”

The new space is especially good for Emily who is very interested in the outdoors. The VELUX roof windows make for the perfect viewing of the night’s sky, so that she can to sit and enjoy the views through her telescope from the comfort of her sofa in a safe, enclosed environment.

Matthew said: “Winning the VELUX competition was a good omen for our entire extension project - everything else seemed to fall into place from then on. We could focus on finding the right builder for the job, which we did shortly afterwards, knowing that we could tick daylight off the list thanks to the VELUX roof windows and our bi-fold doors. 

“We are thrilled with our finished house and the extra space and light the extension brings. Getting the kids ready for school, getting ourselves ready for work and eating breakfast as a family are all routine morning tasks, but they have been made all the more enjoyable thanks to the bright new space in our home.”

For more information about the difference VELUX roof windows can make to your extension, visit:


 Product info:

VELUX INTEGRA® roof windows can be installed in properties with a flat or 0-15 pitched roofs.

From £538.00 excl. VAT

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