New Mobile Home Lifted By A Crane

A new design standard has been set by a prefabricated home sitting at the outskirts of a historic park in a quiet English shire.

The silver birch trees littering the New Forest National Park served as an inspiration for the design of this mobile home that can transform the entire genre.

Roy and Mel Matthews are the owners of the project. For 24 years, they have lived on the five-acre piece of land. Their first home was a static trailer and they later moved to an off-the-shelf mobile house. The couple would always have problems during cold winters as their poorly insulated home was no match for the harsh outdoor elements.

Planning regulations placed a limit on what could be constructed in an English forest. This prompted PAD Studio to create a prefabricated structure that can be lifted and moved by a crane. Project designer Ricky Evans explains that a steel frame serves as the primary support structure of the building. It provides stability that makes it possible to top-lift the structure with ease.

Permanent construction isn’t allowed in this conservation area. Thankfully, planning permissions are given for mobile dwellings. After an extensive research about mobile homes, PAD studio built Forest Lodge: structure based on a steel frame that features an open-plan layout. The living, dining and kitchen areas are combined. There are also two bedrooms, with one serving as an office as well.

The mobile home was prefabricated in Yorkshire over five months. Perhaps more interestingly, all internal structures are fitted including the ceiling fans and limestone countertops. The house came on site in two separate parts, each sitting on a flatbed truck. A crane from Preston Crane Hire Sydney was used to lift the structure onto the concrete and limestone plinth.

The new mobile house is 22 feet in width and 65 feet in length. This is the maximum size of a home allowed by the UK Caravan Act of 1968. The structure now blends well among its surroundings. The chestnut boards will remind visitors of the silver birch trees found in the surrounding areas. The house isn’t only super-insulated, but also boasts of triple-glazed windows strategically places to let in natural light. The interior design is also something to behold, as the interesting choice of material palette doesn’t compete with the natural colors of the forest.


The home was created with Passivhaus standards in mind. It features 3.8 kilowatt photovoltaic array located on the roof, enough to generate electricity and power the entire home. It also boasts of an air-source heat pump to produce hot water. Rainwater is collected from the roof. Structural eyelets can also be found that enable cranes to lift the structure. This is an interesting proposition in the event that Roy and Mel want to move their home.

For now, however, they’re not going anywhere. Mel says that while their new home comes with limited space, they do not see it as a compromise. In fact, the restricted size fits their needs perfectly.

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