The Grand Designs Gloucestershire farmhouse that topped £230,000

Grand Designs has become one of the UK’s most popular TV shows of late and is set to air its new series of Grand Designs: The Street on Channel 4 soon. However, the ambitious self-build projects are unfolding rarely as planned, as delays and unforeseen costs often push them beyond their budget.

New research from the Been Let Down team into malpractice reveals that more than three-quarters of all projects featured on the UK version of the show spent more than expected. Only 16% of the 212 projects managed to stay perfectly on budget, while only 4% ended up costing less than originally planned.

In Season 5 of the series, a property in Gloucester went over budget by £230,000. The episode, titled “The 16th Century Farmhouse”, saw the project cost £300,000 despite an initial budget of £70,000.

READ MORE: Bridgerton star Adjoa Andoh reveals she felt ‘special’ growing up in Gloucestershire

In the episode, Jeremy and Louise Brown bought Upthorpe Farm with a view to turning the Grade II listed property into their dream home. The 16th century farmhouse had barely been touched for over 400 years and retained many of its original features.

Jérémy says: “We started to develop a real attachment to the house. She had been neglected for so long, it was as if we were helping her to wake up.

During the restoration project, the couple added modern elements such as a glazed link and a contemporary kitchen. They used traditional techniques such as wattle and daub to preserve and repair the building.

The 328.57% overrun was blamed on “structural problems due to the fact that the first structural survey was not carried out correctly”. According to research, the Gloucester Farm ranks as the second most over-budgeted build in the history of shows.

Gloucestershire’s overspending is only topped by the ‘Low Impact House’ in season 17. This property in Pembrokeshire has overspent by 5,300%.

He originally planned to spend £500 but ended up spending £27,000. Indeed, the house unfortunately burned to the ground in a fire after the episode aired, meaning the builders had to get back to work.

According to research, many projects end up exceeding their initial cost estimates due to problems or delays during the construction process, while others spend more due to improper structural surveys or foundation issues. However, the majority simply miscalculate the total costs at the planning stage.

You can watch the episode ‘The 16th Century Farmhouse’ in catch-up on 4onDemand here. To see more photos of the beautiful farmhouse in Grand Designs magazine, click here.

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