17 Royal Terrace Mews, Edinburgh

This former 1820's stable and hayloft, unlike many Edinburgh mews properties, had not yet been converted to residential use when we were commissioned to convert it into a one bedroom flat for rent. Our conversion is meant to express the idea of a new house found within the repaired shell of the existing stable so that the history of the building is expressed, particularly on the front façade.

To obtain planning permission a garage was required so the majority of living accommodation is found at first floor level. To accommodate this the original first floor level was lowered and this is expressed, on the front elevation, in a steel channel which also forms the runner for the garage door. The asymmetrical planar language of the new architecture finds expression in panels of glass block and lead on this façade, the latter appearing to form an inner skin behind the stone but in reality dressed into either shadow gaps or mirrors. Internally the lead masks two internal panels which close the whole front façade at night.

Internally the flat is a continual space culminating in a bedroom, the spaces distributed around the path of the sun which is admitted through a dramatic ridge roof light. This single act brings all the necessary extra light into the property while still maintaining the integrity of the uninterrupted slate roofs. Internally mirrors are placed under the ridge to extend the space laterally and to throw light around the room in opposition to the path of the sun. Much of the furniture, including wardrobes, desk and even the bed were designed as part of the commission.

The house was completed in 1995.

Other Details

Architects Richard Murphy, Graeme Mitchell, Mark Floate
Engineers David Narro Associates
Contractor Inscape Joinery
Construction Cost £95,000
Client Ms Carol Grigor

Awards

1996 RIBA / Ibstock National Housing Category Award
1996 RIAS Regeneration Design Award
1996 RIBA Stirling Shortlist
1996 RIBA Award
1998 Civic Trust Award Commendation

Press

18 June 2006 Doctor Mews - Architect's Dream Home Is Tardis-like Revelation Sunday Mail
October 1998 Vom Stall Zur Wohnung Zukunft Wohnen
6 September 1998 Grand Ideas For Small Spaces Sunday Times
5 October 1997 Journey Into Space Scotland On Sunday
January 1997 Edinburgh Mews Wins Award Homes & Interiors Scotland
30 November 1996 The Little House With Big Ideas The Times
11 November 1996 Talented Line Up For Architecture's Booker Financial Times
10 November 1996 Six Of The Best Sunday Times
8 November 1996 The Stirling Awards The Guardian
April 1996 Royal Terrace Mews, Edinburgh Detail Magazine No 3
Spring 1996 Royal Terrace Mews Arq Number 3 Volume 1
21 September 1995 Layering New With The Old Architects' Journal
2 February 1995 Project Review - Houses And Housing Architects' Journal
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