Being an avid fan of Grand Designs over the years, with a personal aspiration to undertake a self-build project, being asked to head over to Criccieth in North Wales, where the penultimate day’s filming for the programme was taking place, was exciting, as Sika, whom I work for, had supplied three different elements to the build that would eventually become Rob Hodgson and his wife’s new home.
I’ve been on a couple of film sets before as an extra but that was very prescriptive in terms of having to be in a particular spot or position at a certain time. With Grand Designs, the workmen simply carry on with their job building this house, whilst it’s the film crew who film around the project, positioning the ever affable Kevin McCloud and Rob in certain areas.
Sika has supplied the anchor grips which sit within the foundations of the build, as well as the single ply membrane Sarnafil roof which in slate grey looks like authentic lead, helped by the lead lookalike piping which is called Batten Profile.
It had also provided all the sealing & bonding that hold the enormous windows in place, as well as up against the perimeter wall where the glass meets the stone. This is the same sealant & bonding which is in the Shard and the Gherkin, two of London’s most famous iconic buildings, so it’ll definitely perform here in Criccieth, where the house sits onto Cardigan Bay overlooking the sea and the build will have to sustain all sorts of weather.
Spending the day at the build and watching the programme being made was fascinating. Interestingly, there was only four in the crew, plus Kevin McCloud. Kevin and Rob were both charming, stopping often in between filming to chat to locals as they walked by, many starting their conversation with: ‘We’ve been watching Grand Designs for years’ and Kevin McCloud was charming, informative and engaging with anyone who approached.
I can’t wait to see the build when it’s completed. With spectacular views from the house, with at least 60 miles of visible beach, it’s easy to see why the Hodgsons chose this idyllic spot.