Typically, in this substantial Victorian semi-detached villa all the major public rooms had been placed at the front. Our instructions were simple - to make the rear of the house as enjoyable as the front and to provide one extra room.
The former kitchen at the rear was compromised by a utility "build out" sitting on a plinth which accommodated the fall on the site from front to back. We concluded that this build out should be 'semi-demolished', the plinth excavated to form a study with a new kitchen built above it. An expressed external flying steel structure allows a lead roof to float free of the walls which in turn consist of western red cedar panels 'offered up' to the exterior stone work and two 'disappearing corners' of glazed doors and windows respectively. From the latter is revealed a view of Edinburgh's mountain 'Arthur's Seat' while the former gives access to a balcony and seat hanging from the new structure and a staircase connecting to the garden below. Contrary to popular belief the Edinburgh climate allows for alfresco breakfasting for a significant number of days in the year!
To compensate for light excluded by the overhanging roof a new roof light joins the extension to the existing building and the former kitchen was converted into a dining room. A garden formed around the idea of a dry pebble river was also part of the same commission.
The house was completed in 1994.
|Client||Mr & Mrs Francis|
1994 EAA Award Commendation
1995 RIBA Award