Can you Find it – Business © 2017 THE FULL STORY…HELEN’S NEW HOME IS PICTURE PERFECTPublished in Can you find it Business Edition on Thursday, January 5th 2016
Fresh start: Helen Whitaker in her new home, which she calls The Picture HouseLife begins at 40 for mother-of-three Helen Whitaker who has marked her milestone birthday by completing the building of her family home in Scotby and launching a photography business.
The five-bedroom house is fitted with all mod cons from underfloor heating to intelligent electrics which link up lighting to movement in rooms.
Grasmere-born Helen spent two-and-a-half years designing and managing the building of her timber-framed home, working with builders, electricians and plumbers.
She left behind a Victorian property next door to live in two lots of rented accommodation while her dream home was built on a plot of land in the garden.
It took a year alone to win full planning permission. She previously had planning consent to build a bungalow but then had to get consent for a house including a photographic studio.
Helen said: “It was too good an opportunity to miss and a new house is easier to look after than an old house. It signals a new, fresh start too.
“My friends will tell you the electrics were a nightmare for me because they were so complicated, but when it all comes together it’s lovely.”
The walls of her house are adorned with large photos of her three young children captured in the style that she hopes will provide her with the foundations of a successful business.
The Picture House is Helen’s return to work after giving up a career in sales when she had her first child. It allows her to work from home and be with her children Jonathan, 12, Sam, 10, and Bethan, six.
She said: “My time has been so taken up by the house, it really was all-consuming. I’d gone to all the trade shows and building exhibitions to learn all I could.”
Now Helen is looking to focus her efforts on her new business.
She has completed training courses at London Institute of the Arts and assisted photographers in the Lake District and London.
She said: “I’ve had the birthday, business and house all in the same year. Now it’s time to concentrate on the business.”