Irish Designer Homes – Barry Fletcher

We bring you the homes Irish designer, engineers and other house building designers live in.

Barry Fletcher RSUA/RIBA

This house in Co Down was built on the footprint of an old stone cottage set on a sloping site with coastline views. The concept was to combine the ‘old and new’ traditions of local vernacular architecture – sleeping quarters in keeping with the original cottage style, living areas contemporary.

Anything unusual? Building materials, construction methods, design…

The stone from the old cottage was used to re-build the boundary walls. A small paddock and yard were added between the house and the original barns, which have also been repaired and brought back into use. The feature king post trusses are stained walnut to complement the walnut stairs and doors creating a contrast between the white walls and ceilings.

Favourite design feature

This would be the glass gable wall which faces south and looks directly onto Slieve Donard mountain. This element was key in the concept design from the outset.
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Favourite room

My favourite room is the open plan space which contains the kitchen, dining, living (south facing) and den (east and south facing) areas. It is the ‘heart’ of the house where my family and I spend most of our time. The den opens out onto the patio and we are surrounded by our garden which consists of native Damson trees which have been retained as they have been there for generations. As the site is elevated, we are greeted on clear mornings with beautiful sun rises over Newcastle Bay. The sun floods the rooms from breakfast time and moves on the southern axis during the day. The double height / vaulted ceilings and highly glazed walls create a very relaxing space, changed by the sunlight during the day and moonlit at night.

Cost Approx.

£80/sqft undertaken as a self-build project.


Room 2, 21 Kinelowen Street, Keady, Co. Armagh, BT60 3ST T: 028 37 539530 E: W:

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Written by Astrid Madsen

Astrid Madsen is the editor of the SelfBuild magazine. Email

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