Blenheim Grove Construction Progress

blenheim all houses 1500 dark.jpg

Construction Timeline

Keep checking back for more updates as the homes start to take shape!

August 2019 - Last two houses

Houses 62 and 64 are now up, and we’ve completed brickwork up to the front of all the houses, and looking at options for external floor tiles!

+ July 2019 - Exterior walls

The builders got a lot done this month. The exterior brick walls are being completed, the roofs got a layer of felt, and the stairs are in!

Brick wall Felt roof Inside stairs

+ June 2019 - Insulation

The insides of the shell are getting built up as we add insulation and put on an airtightness membrane. Bricks will be going on the building soon!

Window view Sloping roof Insulation

+ May 2019 - We have roofs - and street art!

The houses have gone up to roof level on Houses 56, 58, and 60. And we also had amazing street art on our hoarding in May from five local street artists, all based on what ‘home’ means to them. Check out all their art here.

Roof level Sould D Agent Provocateur

+ April 2019 - Timber frames

A very exciting month as the timber frames went in and the houses actually started coming out of the ground.

timber frames digging out 64

Timmmmberrr! In our case it's being lifted up, not falling down!

+ March 2019 - On our way up!

In March we finished digging up the biggest home, House 64, and also poured the concrete slab.

pile of bricks digging out 64

+ February 2019 - Walls

The houses are starting to come out of the ground, with the retaining walls and partition walls going up. The beam and block floors have also gone in, creating the undercroft of the house. Carrying the hod House 64 digging

+ January 2019 - Brick samples

The boys on site have been experimenting with the type of mortar joints to be used on the brickwork (top).

On the second picture you can see that right after the reinforcing bar was installed the temperature dropped to less than 3 degrees, so they had to delay the concrete pour by 2 days.

Better luck next time boys!! Brick Samples Rebar

+ December 2018 - Concrete slabs

The boys are installing the steel reinforcing bars for the concrete retaining walls for nos 62 – 64 Blenheim Grove. This structure once complete will form the lower ground and undercroft level areas.

Concrete Slab Rebar

+ November 2018 - Hoarding and clayboard

Can you believe that some people don’t know what we’ve been up to at Blenheim Grove – we have had to stick up a sign – “left a bit Colin!”

Hoarding Clayboard Laying down clayboard Digging Digging ourselves into a hole

+ October 2018 - Drainage

After the pilings are done, the last stage before the slab is poured is to make sure the drainage is in place. Lots of holes needed!


+ September 2018 - Cutting down piles

Having installed 117 piles, the boys have started the hard work of cutting to them down to the correct level for the slab to sit on top. It’s noisy work, but they should be finished in a week or so.

Piling Cut Off

+ August 2018 - Timber frame factory visit

On Wednesday, 22nd we visited the Cambridgeshire factory of our timber frame manufacturer, WhiteHaus. On the left you can see the thermally insulated panels created in the factory ready for delivery to site and on the right, you can see an example of a building that the panels have been used to create. The guys can build the frame on onsite for a building like this in less than a week - magic!

This particular house is a type of holiday home that WhiteHaus supply to a luxury holiday provider in the UK – time for a mini break!

WhiteHaus Timber Factory

+ Ribbon cutting at Blenheim

WhiteHaus Timber Factory

To mark the official launch of Blenheim Grove, Richard Bacon MP was our guest of honour at a traditional ribbon cutting ceremony on 25th July 2018.

Richard Bacon MP, Chairman of the all party group parliamentary group on self-build, custom and community housebuilding and place-making said:

“Unboxed Homes are part of a revolution now taking place across the country that will give more people the chance to create their own homes according to their own design. This approach offers higher quality and better value for money, as well as being much better for the environment. Unboxed Homes’ new development is a great example of how the housing market is set to change for the better.”

Check out the video of the day!

+ July 2018 - Piling begins

Join Gus on site as he shows us around the progress on site as the pilling work gets underway.

Things are really happening now at Blenheim Grove. This was the piling contractor in action last week. Don’t mess with these guys, one of them was in the Fijian national rugby team!


+ June 2018 - Vibration testing

Over the past month, we have been monitoring vibration on the railway viaduct to help us determine a safe level of vibration whilst we are pilinig the foundations at Blenheim Grove.

Boffins quanitfy vibration in buildings as Peak Particle Velocity (PPV) and it is measured with a very expensive senson in millimetres per second (mm/s).

Interestingly(!) passenger trains were the source of pretty low level of vibration, but when a freight train crossed the viaduct the sensor measured a PPV of 8mm/s.


At least we know that our piling work will not make the railway collapse..


+ May 2018 - Main contractor moves in

Our main contractor MARA BUILD has found their new base during the construction. This is in a disused railway arch next to the site. Below is a picture of the space before they start moving in and it even has a toilet!

Railway Arch

+ April 2018 - Trial pits

If you ever wanted to know what the foundations of a railway viaduct look like we have good news for you! Last week our contractors had to expose the viaduct foundations to verify their depth and composition to ensure that our works would not damage the railway.

What did we learn?

That the Victorians used much shallower foundations for their railway viaducts than we are using for our 5 little houses!


+ March 2018 - Starting on site and clearing the site

We've just started on site at Blenheim Grove - hooray!

The excavator arrives on site The excavator arrives on site.

Clearing the site

Clearing the site Clearing the site.


Video site diary

Gus tells the story of how Blenheim Grove Developments started. It's a story 5 years in the making!

Meet Luke, who has purchased House 56, and hear his thoughts about why self build and custom build are so attractive.

Come take a walk around the site with Gus for a sneak peek behind the scenes of building our custom homes

The builders have done a lot since our last video - check out all the exciting developments!

Richard Bacon MP does the honours as we celebrate our start on site with a ribbon cutting ceremony

The houses are actually starting to come out of the ground and take shape! Check out the undercroft.

We’ve finally dug out the biggest house, House 64, and poured the last slab of concrete.

The timber frames have gone in and the houses are taking shape.

The houses are up to roof level, we have windows, and rooms are beginning to take shape!

This is the first time that we've actually been able to walk into the house itself and take a look around.

The bricks that we spent hours agonising over are finally going up on the outside of the house!

Some bricks walls are complete, and we have sloping roofs and felt on some of the houses!



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