Grand Designs disappoints with unfinished empty home despite 18-month build plan

Kevin McCloud hopes to return in the future

Lucida's woodland home was complete on the outside (Channel 4)
Lucida's woodland home was complete on the outside. (Channel 4)

What did you miss?

The latest Grand Designs' project was left unfinished in scenes that aired on Wednesday night after planning for an 18-month build.

While the outside shell of the wooden home was complete, the inside was left completely empty.

Woodmaker Lucinda set her heart on building a house made out of wood in the acre of remote woodland on her property in rural Herefordshire and she enlisted the help of her equally creative children – her son Dan and her daughter Rosie.

The idea was born from her lifelong love of wood as Lucinda had gone to college to learn about cabinet making 45 years ago and then set up her own furniture business.

What, how and why?

The house was built in a remote woodland in Herefordshire (Channel 4)
The house was built in a remote woodland in Herefordshire (Channel 4)

Three years after Kevin McCloud first embarked on the house building journey with Lucinda, the presenter returned to see how she had got on with finishing her woodland home.

In the car on the way, McCloud said he knew it would take the woodmaker longer than the 18 months she had hoped because of her profession.

He said in a piece to camera: "It’s a perfect day to visit Lucinda in her woodland home. I first made this journey three years ago when Lucinda was just getting started on her wooden eco home.

"She thought of course it would take 18 months but we all knew she’s a cabinet maker, she’s a furniture maker, it was always going to be very finessed building. The question is, does it merit that amount of time spent on it? Is it beautiful?"

On arrival, McCloud left his car at the bottom of the drive before taking the woodland path up to the eco home.

Sharing his first impressions of the home, he said: "Good grief that is so beautiful. It is so precise. Look at it. Like a piece of furniture scaled up in the middle of the forest you don’t expect to find it. It is exquisitely done. It appears to float, it defies gravity and expectation. It’s too good. It’s too beautiful."

The wood mastermind welcomed McCloud to her house as she shared it had come to life exactly how she had hoped.

There were hopes for the build to be complete in 18 months but it didn't happen (Channel 4)
There were hopes for the build to be complete in 18 months but it didn't happen. (Channel 4)

"It is what I imagined it would be. It did take a ridiculously long time. Forever!” She said, “I think it was worth it."

Keen to see inside, McCloud probed: "What about inside? What about the layout?"

Lucinda tried to let the presenter down gently ahead of his sneak peek around the home. She said: "Would you like to have a look? I should apologise in advance."

Despite the perfected outside, the home was completely empty without any furniture or a lick of paint and not even a staircase in sight.

The mezzanine was the only thing that was in place in the "blank canvas".

Reacting, McCloud said: "Oh yes, now I see it's one big void."

In typical fashion of the presenter, he grilled the homeowner. "Does it upset you?" He said.

Lucinda didn't take offence, saying: "No it's fine. I don't have a date to be in."

"There's no one else to please," McCloud agreed.

"It's a real luxury to work at your own pace," she concluded.

It was a labour of love for the homeowner (Channel 4)
It was a labour of love for the homeowner (Channel 4)

McCloud asked the burning question on everyone's lips: "How long?"

Lucinda said: "Come back in a couple of years."

In the voice over, McCloud addressed what Lucinda had left to finish inside her home.

He said: "A chunk of that time Lucinda will devote to handcrafting the wooden staircase of her own design. Using all the offcuts she has diligently saved."

Social media was awash with fans complaining the home hadn't been complete.

Among the sea of viewers, one wrote: "Two unfinished builds, this will allow another repeat, disguised as a second look."

"Be nice when it's finished."

"Right that's it I'm not watching Grand Designs again! Another week and another unfinished project. Sort it out Kevin McCloud."

"Are we going to see any finished properties in this series? I know we're only in week 2 but I'm not hopeful."

"You better go back when she has finished the inside."

What else happened on Grand Designs?

Kevin McCloud pictured with Lucinda (Channel 4)
Kevin McCloud pictured with Lucinda (Channel 4)

The family of creatives behind the build were praised for being ingenious.

Son Dan saved his mum money by coming up with hexagonal moulds for the concrete for the foundations of the house.

Initially, the worker they had enlisted to help voiced concerns over the moulds and they decided to strengthen them with cable ties.

Tense scenes saw one of the moulds nearly cave in but luckily in the end it held well.

Later, Dan built a train track in the remote woodland too.

Viewers were delighted with the creative process shown on the show. "Brilliant inspirational design by ingenious craftspeeps. Best ever GD house - beautiful angles - would have liked a more lingering view," one person wrote on social media.

Others added: "An unfinished build has leapt very high into my favourite builds. It's going to be special."

"Absolutely brilliant, loved this one, beautiful details and consideration about fitting into the surrounding environment."

"Lucinda has a great can do attitude that is an antidote to the big budget builds."

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