The Drive for Fine Design

Jason Plato will be a familiar face to regular viewers of Channel 5's "Fifth Gear" motoring programme, but Jason is also a major figure in British Motorsport. With 10 races throughout the season at venues across the UK, Jason has finished in the top 5 in the championship 8 times having won it in 2001 and come a very close second in 2007.

"It's a pretty high octane life" admits Jason "and so home is very important to me. It's a bolt hole, somewhere to retreat away from the pressures, to unwind, relax and recharge my batteries with my wife"

And when you see that home, you realise that his passion for racing and cars (he currently owns a Porsche 911 Turbo, Seat Leon Cupra and a Volkswagen Touareg) extends to his passion for design.

How would you describe yourself?

"I'm a perfectionist, and the devil is in the detail - be that a 200mph sports car or the precise location of a painting on a wall. Basically, I just love being around a great design"

How did you approach your house renovation project?

"We moved into our house in 2006, and just lived in it for a year whilst we took our time to assess what we wanted to do with each room. Once we'd decided, the major work started in October 2007 and we moved out for three months. I'd always been interested in interior design so I took on the role of Project Manager myself and supervised everything. We're largely talking cosmetics, decoration, lighting plus a lot of integrated home technology"

Why did you choose Silvelox as your garage door provider?

"I'd gone to a design show in London, and one of my specific tasks was to suss out garage doors. I looked at everything there, and just thought they were all disappointing, nothing grabbed me at all. I was about to leave the exhibition when I suddenly saw the Silvelox stand and that was it. I've got a keen eye for good engineering and nice design, and Silvelox ticked all the boxes. They're beautifully made, look fantastic and operate phenomenally well. Even from the inside of the garage, whether the doors are open or closed, they're aesthetically pleasing. What's more they do the job, they're very secure and from start to finish the Silvelox people just seemed to know intuitively what I wanted."

Can you tell us about your favourite design pieces in your home?

"I know you'd expect me to say this, but, honestly I'd have to include the Silvelox garage doors. I've got three of them. They really are a lovely bit of Italian design, very Italian.
And because of my love of Italian design I'd also include my Flexform. They make iconic pieces of furniture, which are very contemporary and minimalist."

If you could have designed anything, what would it be?

"Concorde. It always stopped people in their tracks, and it still does today. You'd die happy if you'd come up with something that's as gorgeous as that to look at. It was a one off."

Specifications
Name
Plato
Material
Oak
Profession
Racing driver and presenter
Finish
Oak
Build Time
3 years
Standard or custom design
Custom
Silvelox Products Installed
3 custom made garage doors, 1 custom made front door with glass panels.
Installation date
Jan 2010
House type
Barn conversion
Build route
Specialist contractors
Dimensions
Garage door - 2,570mm wide 2,280mm high. Front door - 900mm wide, 2,200 high.
Construction System
Brick/timber frame.
  Location
Oxfordshire

Published by Ian Chubb

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