Green Building Store is now 21°

The Byre, Tyne & Wear

Accessible Design Consultant Phil Newbold, Director of New Bold Design, has undertaken a special needs adaptation of a barn conversion within a Conservation Area. The project aimed to create a wheelchair accessible home, along with accommodation for a live-in carer. PERFORMANCE triple glazed timber windows and doors from 21° were chosen for the project.


The poor quality of the original barn conversion with standard, hardwood, double-glazed windows and the location of the property in the Green Belt and a Conservation Area presented the design team with a number of major challenges in delivering a wheelchair accessible home including the accommodation required by the clients, their carer and visitors.


Adapting the building to the needs of a wheelchair user was achieved by the following measures:

  • Addition of an accessible en-suite wetroom
  • New resin-bound gravel and astroturf to the external surfaces providing continuous level wheelchair access throughout the site
  • Creation of space for the client’s special equipment for exercise and massage
  • Installation of a platform lift to provide wheelchair access to the first floor of the annexe
  • Widening of all the internal doors and opening up the kitchen / dining / family room layout with a fully accessible kitchen and new utility room
Triple glazed timber windows & doors

The energy conservation measures of the project include new triple-glazed windows and external doors plus a new, gas-fired boiler. All lighting has been replaced with LED fittings. The EPC rating for the house is now Band C. 21°s PERFORMANCE triple glazed timber windows and doors were specified for the project.

The client is delighted with the quality of the windows and doors and the aesthetic transformation they have made compared to the stained, double-glazed units which they replaced. The extra opening width and the level threshold has provided excellent wheelchair access through the new doors. The handles being located at the bottom of the windows with low cills allows a wheelchair user to operate the opening window independently. The thermal performance of the windows and doors is excellent and as the site is near a busy road, the improvement in sound insulation is a welcome bonus.

Designer, Phil Newbold

Various measures were taken to ensure that the windows and doors enhanced the accessibility of the home. Window cill levels in the Kitchen and Utility Room have been lowered to provide views from a wheelchair over the garden and open fields beyond. All windows have handles in the bottom rail. All external door openings are a minimum of 900 mm wide and have a level threshold.

Project details


October 2017

Case study

July 2018

Life changing homes