What do I do with a massive pillar in my kitchen?

PUBLISHED: 09:54 03 November 2017 | UPDATED: 09:54 03 November 2017

Dorothy Thompson and Rupert in their house they are renovating, but don't know what to do with the necessary pillar between their kitchen and sitting room. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Dorothy Thompson and Rupert in their house they are renovating, but don't know what to do with the necessary pillar between their kitchen and sitting room. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Copyright: Archant 2017

Norwich homeowner Dorothy Thompson has uncovered a large post in her kitchen while doing structual alterations and doesn’t know what to do with it.

It's a dilemma...Dorothy Thompson and her dog Rupert with the imposing pillar It's a dilemma...Dorothy Thompson and her dog Rupert with the imposing pillar

What do you do when you find yourself with a very big column in the middle of your new kitchen?

That is the dilemma facing homeowner Dorothy Thompson. Mrs Thompson and her husband Nick are in the midst of restructuring their kitchen into a large open plan eating and entertaining area at the rear of their hme on Judge’s Walk in the city and it’s all looking good...except for one 730cm x 935cm sized problem. Removing a dividing wall has revealed a large column, or pillar, which is supporting the ceiling so the Thompsons aren’t quite sure what to do with it. “We moved to this house in 2000 and we love it here,” said Mrs Thompson. “The house was built in 1906 and it’s beautiful except now we have this column in the middle of our new Bryan Turner kitchen and we don’t know what to do with it.”

Nick Taylor, chairman of the NDAEA, Norwich & District Association of Estate Agents, and a specialist in selling Golden Triangle properties including those on Judge’s Walk, said: “If the column is getting in the way of a good design then it has to go. Any wall or column, even if it is a supporting structure can be removed from a property as long as it is done properly and replaced with a steel beam to support the structure above. Sometimes this type of alteration can seem a bit scary but in the long run it is often best to bite the bullet and demolish.

“If the lady is determined to keep the column then the best thing to do with it is to build some storage around it and work it into the new design in some way. The lady should take the advice of a good builder and a structural engineer for advice about removing a load bearing structure.”

Interior designer Paula Gundry said: ” Often in situation such as this we would have been involved from the outset, especially when we design our kitchens. The column would have been incorporated within the kitchen, perhaps creating a bookcase or shelving area or something more special such as a drinks station, tea/coffee area along with shelving for alcoholic drinks, even a wine cooler. If not, depending upon space, we could actually build in a table and create an informal dining area. Essentially, we may have incorporated the column using cabinetry and given it a purpose or hidden it within the cabinetry. We still can if she would like us to look into it?”

Have you got a property dilemma? A problem with an extension or alteration to your home or maybe you just need some inspiration? Email caroline.culot@archant.co.uk

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Caroline Culot


I am the property editor in charge of delivering some exciting and informative content within Archant’s varied titles. We have 16-17 pages of stories, features and columns in the EDP Property supplement out every Friday free in your EDP so please don’t miss it.