Edinburgh-based GRAS has won permission for a 415m² farmhouse, 45m² studio flat and stables next to a working farm in the Scottish Borders
The four-bedroom house on the Rutherford Estate near Kelso is described as a contemporary reinterpretation of the Tweed Valley’s ’large, utilitarian sheds and barns’ and will be constructed from ’rough sawn timber, mild steel and profiled metal sheet roofing’.
A future timescale for the project is not yet known.
The architect’s view
The house’s primary orientation follows the North-East to South-West orientation which is apparent in the majority of agricultural and industrial buildings along the length of the Tweed Valley.
On approach, the building appears as a simple, low-slung pitched roof built in corrugated sheet metal supported by a functional steel and glass frame, a ubiquitous form throughout the Borders. Overhanging eaves soften the building’s edge, blurring the threshold from inside to out and heightening engagement with the surrounding landscape. Beneath the eaves and the projecting gable roofs, a continuous terrace runs around the perimeter of the house creating a series of covered spaces of varying scales and outlooks.
Continuous timber walls, running the length of the house are broken by sliding screens which can be drawn aside to reveal floor to ceiling glazed openings. These glazed screens also slide away so that living spaces can be opened up to the terraces on all elevations. This series of internal, covered and external spaces combined with the layered façade provides adaptability to suit seasonal uses. A rational plan with generous circulation both inside and out provides a series of single and double-height linked spaces, each with their own character, scale and framed views across the fields to the Cheviot Hills. Glazed gables provide focused views to the farmsteading and to the forested areas to the North-East.
The discreet studio-flat is built into the terraced landscape, making use of the natural gradient and providing privacy from the main house. Its façade ties into timber fences which define the terrace edges while a planted roof connects it with the terraced landscape.
The stable block, studio-flat and house are grouped around the terraced landscape to define a series of external spaces for different functions ranging from the more public entrance courtyard to private garden terraces. The terraces provide a degree of delineation to an otherwise untamed landscape, allowing wild meadow grasses and wildflowers to grow in and around formally defined spaces.
Location: Scottish Borders
Type of project: Residential/new dwelling
Landscape architect: Brown Earth Landscapes
Structural engineer: Clancy Consulting
Start on site date: to be confirmed
Completion date: to be confirmed
Gross internal floor area: main house 415m² with auxiliary studio of 45m²