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House at Roslea

  • Architect:
    Aughey O'Flaherty Architects
  • Award Type:
    Best House 2005
  • Location: Ulster
House at Roslea


Northern Under €300,000

Architect's Comment
The house is situated off a quiet country road on a gently sloping site with views of the hills of Fermanagh. The site contains an 18th century cottage and outhouse. The house is located opposite and parallel to the cottage thereby forming an informal courtyard with the outhouse to the east and to the west are mature ash trees and hedgerows, which complete the cluster.

The house has a simple narrow plan form running east west incorporating the change in level across the site. This long rectilinear form is roofed in a continuous barrel vault, reminiscent of a typical farmyard shed. This traditional form and its clustering around the existing structures on the site echoes Irish farm courtyards. A long low secondary element is expressed on the courtyard side of the house by a porch leading to and containing the main entrance of the house.

Internally, the roof is finished in painted strip boarding, the walls in painted plaster and the floors in iroko. Externally the roof is finished in untreated copper sheeting, the walls in dashed render and the windows and screens in iroko. The gravel finished courtyard defines the central external space and links the elements of the composition.

Clients' Comment
We were in search for a home that was unique yet practical and functional. We had a great site with stunning views and felt we needed to build a house that capture these views.

The architects designed for us a house that has exceeded our dreams and much more. The house has a barrel vaulted roof made from copper, which not only requires little maintenance but also blends well with the surrounding countryside. The house has an open plan kitchen, living and dining area with a high curved ceiling. This, along with ample windows providing plenty of natural light, gives the house an amazing feeling of space and light. Central to this open plan area is a stunning white fireplace, which immediately draws the eye and makes the room appear positively stately.

Living in our new home has been an amazing experience. It is welcoming and homely and if we had to sum it up in two words we would say contemporary and classic.

The jury was particularly impressed by the subtlety of the forms used redolent of traditional buildings in the countryside. This distinctive house takes its place almost as an integral element in the rural landscape. The detailing of the building is skillfully handled, deftly articulating the spaces within the barrel vault shaped structure with deceptive simplicity.