A kitchen extension by Huxley Developments

Builder of the month – April – Huxley Developments

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The best bit about what I do? When our clients say to us, we love this!

Meet Rafe Philpot, owner of Huxley Developments Ltd. What started as a child’s passion for Lego is now a successful construction company operating across Portsmouth, Hampshire and the South Coast.

When I spoke to Rafe this week, what came across the most was his enthusiasm and affability. He laughs a lot. He works hard and he enjoys what he does. Clearly the kid with the Lego still has a passion for building things.

Rafe Philpot of Huxley Developments Ltd

His dad was also a builder and, as a teenager, Rafe spent several years helping him out and learning by getting hands on, then at 18 he was apprenticed to another local builder. Rafe credits him for taking him under his wing and becoming a real mentor. And when things weren’t going well, Rafe repaid that by sticking with him.

“I came in at the high and saw everything at the low. In the end it was just the two of us working hand-in-glove, but I learned how to do everything, and to do it well, and I learned how a business operates. Eventually I was ready to go it alone.”

Still only 29, his years of experience and knowledge have given him the edge. He has a close knit team and he’s in a position to choose the kind of jobs they take on. Later this year, team-Huxley are building a brand new house in Guernsey, a job that he describes as traditional at first glance with some ultra-modern features, like partial glazed roofing. When I suggest that Guernsey is quite the commute, he laughs and tells me it looked like an interesting build, and he couldn’t resist. But that’s only half the story.

A good businessman, he knows that a job like this will open doors to other projects and bring in more bespoke work. Not that new builds like this come up often enough to stop him from taking on extensions, conversions and remodelling jobs, as his portfolio reflects. Recently he’s done some commercial projects, but confesses that his heart is firmly with residential clients and delivering for homeowners.

“It sounds corny, but the lads really get a kick out of putting a smile on the faces of our clients, we love it when people are thrilled with the transformation.” We can’t argue with that. So what does he do when he isn’t building houses? He laughs again.

“I’m a builder and a dad, that’s it! The company is named after our third born son, Huxley, and we now have four kids under 10 so there’s no time for anything else!”

Find out more about Huxley Developments Ltd and check out their portfolio of work.

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