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The endlessly affable George Clarke oversees spectacular transformations in this new series, beginning with a suitably marvellous metamorphosis in South Wales.
In a nutshell
Let’s be brutally honest: huge swathes of our fair country are covered with pretty bland and banal residential housing. Streets so samey, they may as well have shuffled off some vast conveyer belt circa 1972. That’s the appeal of this particular programme. Unlike Grand Designs, which focuses on incredibly privileged posh types who are indulging their Guardian lifestyle magazine dreams, this show is about ordinary folks who are daring to change their ordinary homes into something spectacular.
So last night we met a couple in Glamorgan who live in a generic 1970s property and had had enough of the dreary pebbledash and bygone aesthetics. Their budget was by no means vast – mere pittance compared to the huge sums spent on Grand Designs – but with the help of a cunning architect they ended up with a surreal, wedge-like, Welsh answer to London’s Shard. In other words: wow. Ugly House to Really Very Lovely House indeed.
What's the verdict?
This was a lovely little excursion to flights of design fancy, and George himself is a refreshingly down-to-earth guide. Not for him big speeches and poetic musings in the Kevin McCloud manner, and the whole enterprise is genuinely inspiring rather than intimidatingly aspirational.