Shepherd's huts have been around for hundreds of years. It is the classic Victorian hut, as featured in Thomas Hardy's novel 'Far From the Madding Crowd', clad in corrugated iron or timber which inspires the huts we make today.
Plankbridge is all about having one foot in past and one foot firmly in the present. We were convinced that we could take the classic proportions of the Victorian hut and introduce modern insulation, breather membrane and vapour barriers to create, in effect, an extra room for your house or business. Our huts and living huts, whilst keeping faithful to the classic proportions, often incorporate bathrooms, saunas, offices, information centres, kitchens - a huge range of modern features.
The Plankbridge shepherd’s hut and living vans reflect many years of experience, research and a close affection for our rural heritage. We've made over 500 huts. Shepherd’s huts were originally made by Victorian agricultural engineers and blacksmith’s forges, and at Plankbridge we have copies of original Victorian shepherd’s hut blueprints from a local Dorchester firm called Lott and Walne. Another local firm, Eddisons, made living vans, inspiration for the wider hut version which we began offering in 2016.
Whilst the mainstay is new builds we often restore original huts for people, and have found the restoration process to be the best way to truly excel at the hutmaking craft. We utilise modern tools as much as we need to, such as Computer Aided Design for the working drawings. Yet we also hand draw the floor plans to design your hut together with you. We still get a buzz from taking a blank sheet of white paper and hand sketching your own unique hut; the start of the wonderful process from ideas to finished hut.