Built-in BISF House cupboard improvement

Built-in BISF House cupboard improvement 1

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Hi all,
with the onset of winter, major projects are on hold here (maybe I’m less hardy than Grangey!) but in the meantime I’ve been busy with some smaller ones and thought you might be interested in what I’ve been up to with the built-in cupboards between the two main bedrooms.

I find these a very nice storage solution and they have quite a bit of charm with their panelled doors. However one strange feature of them is that the area above them is totally wasted in the original design. I guess built-in furniture was cutting edge in the 1940s and having storage go right up to the ceiling was just too radical!

What I have done is prized off the plywood panel above the cupboards in the front bedroom. This exposed the unused void and also quite a mess as the softboard ceiling had collapsed in there, probably due to a leak from the water tank at some point in the past.

After replacing that part of the ceiling with plasterboard I have installed routed rails top and bottom for sliding plywood doors to make use of the previously wasted space above the cupboards.


  1. Hi,We recently scrapped the entire built in cupboard area to put a long set of double drawers in, we found allsorts of odd bits whilst doing it but the weirdest was a space marked out for another doorway on the dividing bit of hardboard, maybe they just used some scrap hardboard because they made a whoopsie but i wondered if you or anyone else had come across this?  

  2. Hi all, sorry for the long absence. Here are some photos of what I’ve done in the front bedroom after I took out the chimney flue.

    I built another built-in cupboard where the chimney flue was, the same size as the other two cupboards, but opening the other way (towards the door).

    I had a door made in the same style as the others for the new cupboard as well as three smaller doors to go above the original cupboards.

    I also replaced the radiator in the room with one of those plinth heaters that are usually used in kitchens, in the bottom of the new cupboard.

    I’m pretty pleased with it, it looks good and uses the space that was wasted by the boxed-in flue.