Grand Designs Australia

Episode Guide

Callignee Bushfire House

Series 1 · Episode 1

February 2009. Chris Clarke had just spent two years building his minimalist timber and steel dream home at Callignee in Gippsland when, less than a week after completion, it was burnt to the ground in the devastating Black Saturday bushfires. With nothing remaining but a concrete slab and a burnt out shell Chris was left shattered and numb. After recovering from the initial grief he was determined to re-build and re-use every last salvageable element of the original house. What he creates in the year or so following is simply remarkable. By adding sturdy recycled elements with the latest fire resistant materials, Chris sets out to produce a tough, resilient version of the original home (now dubbed Callignee One). Wearing its embattled past as a badge of honour, will Callignee Two not only face up to the Aussie bush? Get the supplier list from this episode here See a transcript of the web chat with Chris here


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Posted by Annie.glowReport
I just had to comment,Chris this is an amzing story,an amzing idea and full on determination.I too have similar health issues and Im a hundred percent sure this is what we need to live a good life.Im awed by the imagination you must have and your Dad would be so proud.Im really glad I seen this show today,its inspired me and moved me.Blessed be your own made home :))
Posted by Report
Made even more impressive by the cost of this build. Compare this to the Byron Bay Beach house on a square metre basis. I'd have a guess at (very roughly) around $2000 a square mtr for Calignee as opposed to around $10,000 a square mtr for the Byron Bay Beach house. Very, very impressive.
Posted by Report
Chris Ure incredible!!!:D This home is so light, peaceful... amazing.. WOW:D Regs. from Poland
Posted by Johannes7Report
Hi Chris. Congratulations, you have built a house with soul! Inspirational.

Posted by Jill40Report
This is still the best Grand Design of all the episodes. We are up to the second last episode of Series 3 and Callignee 2 is still the most fascinating and bravely built (rebuilt) house of all the series. Tis my dream home, and its surroundings only add to the Utopia. The rustic earthy way in which it was built is just magic. It is a brave person that can rebuild after a bush fire with such passion as to reuse burnt materials where possible. This story and Chris are both inspirational..
Posted by Annie.glowReport
I agree with you to on this one,your word Utopia is the right word,for sure!!
Posted by Report
I agree with Jill - absolutely inspirational the best of all Grand Designs we have seen. Real magic and makes me quite envious! Well done Chris -
Posted by ruthbrown24Report
Wow Chris I'm in love with your raw rustic style and your amazing journey to build an organic lifestyle. You really missed your calling as an architect, although your background in carpentry and project management would have truly helped you work and execute the materials so beautifully. I'm a third year architecture student and can"t wait to show your house to my class mates, as I feel it's essential to keep promoting the word on eco friendly house design. I have seen architects at the end of there career who would struggle to create what you have.I have had health problems over these last two years and I'm in the process of transforming my life to natural and organic, similar to your journey as i believe its so important. My dream is to create a natural way of living like you have done for your self. I can't help thinking you would have non stop phone calls of people wanting houses designed!!! If you continue designing I would love to see any more of your work. Well done and I wish you all the best with health and happiness. Ruth from darwin:)
Posted by Linton2Report
chris clark spends all his time on my you tube website
Posted by Linton2Report
i have seen this eposode 19 times and i still like it