Design for the Weekend: Transforming a Historic Shop into a Modern Home Office in Blandford, Dorset

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In today’s video, we’re in Blandford Forum, Dorset, working on an exciting project: transforming a former Hall and Woodhouse shop on Salisbury Street into a modern home office and living space. This historic building, located right in the heart of the town centre, offers both unique challenges and incredible opportunities for a redesign.

Initial Assessment

The property, a bit tired but full of character, features a spacious ground floor that will be converted into a stylish office space. The first floor, with its large open-plan area, will become the main living space. The top floor, currently housing the bedrooms, offers plenty of room for improvement while retaining its original charm.

Design and Layout

On the ground floor, the plan is to open up the shop frontage and use it primarily as an office. The spacious area will accommodate workstations and a meeting room, with ample room for displays and client interactions. The existing structure provides a great foundation for creating a productive and aesthetically pleasing work environment.

The first floor, measuring 7 by 8 meters, will be transformed into an open-plan kitchen, dining, and living area. By relocating the kitchen to the side with existing drainage and adding a large farmhouse table, we create a flexible and inviting space for both living and entertaining. A TV area and additional seating will complete this level, making it a versatile space for everyday use.

Upper Levels

The top floor will see minimal intervention, with a focus on creating a practical and comfortable living area. The addition of a shower room and possibly another bathroom will enhance the functionality of this space. Maintaining the building’s historical integrity is a priority, so any changes will be sympathetic to its original design.

Historical Context

Blandford Forum, known for its beautifully rebuilt market town square after a fire in the late 1700s, provides a picturesque backdrop for this project. The town’s rich history and charming architecture make it an ideal location for both living and working.


This renovation project not only revitalises a historic building but also adapts it for modern living and working needs. By making thoughtful design choices and respecting the building’s heritage, we create a space that is both functional and beautiful. Watch the full video to see the transformation unfold and get inspired for your renovation projects!

Rightmove Link


I’m always eager to hear your thoughts and suggestions on the topics discussed. You will always find me at carl@carlarchitect.co.uk.

All the best

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