Aseaside location and a harbour view make for a pretty enviable location to build in. The rhythm of the changing tides, the reflection of sunlight on the water, and the movement of boats combine to create a picturesque scene that always captivates. When the opportunity arose to buy an uninspiring bungalow, with planning permission approved for its replacement (in a location just metres from the beach), Peter and Jan couldn’t resist. Having spent many years visiting and staying near to this pretty seaside town, the site offered them the chance to create a unique holiday home very close to its centre, but still with those all-important views.
Although the approved drawings they inherited with the site didn’t match Peter and Jan’s design brief and vision for their project, what they did do was establish a number of very positive principals: the replacement of a bungalow with a two-storey house; the repositioning of the building on the site up to the ‘building line’ created by the neighbouring properties; and the addition of a separate garage at a lower level with a terraced garden on top.
Architectural Designer John Williams explains, ‘While starting afresh with the design allowed us to explore new opportunities, we were aware that the principals approved in the earlier scheme had been hard-won. With this in mind, the changes we suggested were carefully justified; a modest increase to the overall roof-height could be achieved with no negative impact, if we revised the layout of gables, moving them away from positions close to neighbouring boundaries. Large areas of glazing could also be incorporated by carefully choosing positions and using designs that didn’t impact on neighbourly privacy.’
For Peter and Jan it was important that the new house had a bright, welcoming and generous feel, perfect for relaxed family holidays as well as partying with friends. To comply with the planning constraints they chose to clad the house externally with a mixture of white render and timber boarding beneath slate roofing. Internally they wanted to use a post-and beam style oak-frame throughout to create impact, incorporating features such as vaulted ceilings, galleried landings and a defined but openplan style layout.
The new house sits in an elevated position two-thirds of the way into the site, where it gains the best views of the bay and coastline beyond. The project is a testament to how a considered design that enhances the local vernacular is not only going to make for a smoother planning process but will also stand the test of time.
Led by Iain Hendry from their base in Ayrshire, Oakwrights Scotland’s key strength is in taking your oak frame build idea or concept and fulfilling the entire process to completion in a seamless and cohesive manner.