TWO “Grand Designs-style” homes have been given the go-ahead in a former sandstone quarry in Eden.

The company behind the plans says the pair of energy-efficient dwellings will “bring to life” a red sandstone quarry in Appleby last used in the 1780s. The woodland plots, which have direct access off Bongate, have been “hidden from view for years”.

The contemporary buildings have been designed by Revolution Architecture, part of the Prospus Group, which has offices in Carlisle, Edinburgh and Oxford.

Phil Graham, designer of the homes, said; “Our aim is to bring contemporary and environmentally conscious designs to clients in Cumbria and beyond, and this recent development represents a unique opportunity to build a stunning home in one of the most highly sought-after towns in Cumbria with views of Appleby Castle.”

The plans for the 1,800 square metre site, part of which is a former commercial nursery garden, met with approval from Eden District Council, under delegated powers.

In their report, officers stated: “These dwellings incorporate architectural qualities rarely seen within the district and we welcome the innovative design approach.”

They said planning policy stated that “great weight should be given to outstanding or innovative designs which promote high levels of sustainability or help raise the standard of design more generally in an area”.

Prospus has described the dwellings as “Grand Designs-style”, referring to the Channel 4 series which follows people creating their dream homes.

Prospus director Tom Woof, of Wharton, near Kirkby Stephen, said: “This site has proved quite tricky from a planning point of view.

“The previous owner of these plots tried a couple of times to gain planning consent and failed to make the most of the site’s potential.

“Our approach has been to celebrate the natural beauty of the area and its woodland, developing designs that complement and open up these spaces.”

Mr Woof continued: “The site lies within the Appleby Conservation Area which imposes additional constraints upon any development that may change its character.

“These development proposals will allow a greater public understanding of the area’s heritage and its significance.”

The plans feature one three-bedroom and one four-bed home, each with local stone and larch-clad walls, zinc or natural slate roofs, and dark grey aluminium powder-coated window frames.

According to planning statements, applicants Mr Orsacek and Ms Rahim engaged Prospus to help with the planning application.