A good barn conversion already feels whimsical in the best way, but add a secret room, and you’ve got the makings of downright fantasy. And if it’s a book-lined library? Well, we may never want to join the real world again.
Designed by London-based practice Studio Seilern Architects, the 17th-century barn, which is part of a cluster of buildings on the historic Old Belchers Farm in the village of Little Milton, was converted into offices and an exhibition space for the estate. The barn’s rustic facade of blackened weatherboarding contrasts nicely with its bright interior spaces.
The Albion Barn, as it’s called, comprises a suite of white offices, exhibition areas, and a common space that all wrap around the library, which is hidden behind four secret doors that also feature bookshelves. Inside the intimate space are walls fully lined with books, a narrow mezzanine gallery that gives access to the highest shelves, and a polished steel ceiling featuring an oculus. The reflective surface creates the illusion of a double-height room, adding to the the library’s already-magical properties. Take a look around.