Saturday, March 2, 2013

Kitchen extension - work in progress

Here we present some photos of some work in progress, a kitchen extension to an existing house in red brick.

There's lots left to do, including replacing the unsightly temporary vent stack on the right with a more appropriate version! A two-course brick plinth was constructed to match the existing architectural details. More details on brick plinths and their historical significance is available here -

A traditional stable door was incorporated into a new porched back entrance. This will make an interesting feature and allow for fresh air in summer time.

Finally, a new bespoke kitchen is being kitted. We think this extension will make a very impressive addition to the existing house, freeing up the space where the original kitchen was for entertaining and family use. We hope you found this short work in progress piece interesting and that you will checl back for more photos as work progresses.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Modernisation and extension of traditional large Irish farmhouse

We were engaged by the owner of a large derelict two-storey farm house to extensively refurbish the original structure and construct an extension of approximately the same floor area again. The original structure was completely gutted, the roof removed and the chimneys rebuilt.

Meanwhile, the foundations, floor slab and a reinforced concrete frame were provided for the added area at the rear.

The architect-designed project called for very high specification fixtures and fittings, along with a modern and very efficient energy centre, combining solar water heating and an efficient oil boiler with intelligent zoning and control. The ground floors of the old house were removed so that a fully zoned underfloor heating system could be installed throughout, the ultimate in comfort!

The plaster was completely removed from the old house as it was in poor condition. The stonework wasn't of a standard good enough to expose. The entire house was later rendered again in wet dash, a timeless and classic finish, and replacing what was there originally.

The interior of the old house was extensively modernised, with all new floors, ceilings and wall finishes. Heavy internal insulation combined with modern aluminium-clad timber windows ensured that heat was kept in. Yellow brick was salvaged from the old house, cleaned and used to build an arched surround for a solid-fuel stove in the sitting room.

At the rear, a generous area of glass ensures the kitchen and master bedroom are well-lit, and a spacious patio and balcony will make for some relaxing summer days.

The traditional wet dash finish mentioned earlier is mixed using lime, cement, white sand and 5mm stone. Wet dash is a time-tried and typically Irish finish, tested over the years in our harsh Atlantic climate. It retains its colour with time and will never need painting. Careful and tasteful landscaping really added the final touch to this magnificent country residence.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Renovation and extension of country cottage, Co. Westmeath

The owners of this cottage approached us with architect drawings for a very pleasant south facing extension. With spectacular views over one of Westmeath's finest lakes, the large glass area is of great benefit.

We completed the project on time and to budget. A generous decking area will be ideal for barbecues in the summer. The aesthetics of the original construction were retained by reusing the existing roof tiles, supplemented with selected second hand roof tiles sourced from our suppliers.

A modern, open plan kitchen and living was created by completely renovating the existing kitchen area of the cottage, and creating an opening in the existing rear wall leading to the extension.

The extension allows for a generous, bright and airy living area. Overall a very pleasant living space has been designed and realised, while keeping the character of the original cottage intact.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Weather-proofing works to a church building - access

Our JCB telescopic handler was essential in gaining access to replace deteriorated gutters, fascia and soffit to a church building. The last few year's extreme winter weather events had damaged the gutters, and weathering had caused deterioration to the fascia and soffit.

The old timber fascia was replaced with durable aluminium fascia with PVC soffit boards. Backing timbers were repaired as necessary. Heavy duty, extra wide gutters were provided to cope with runoff from the long span roof present. Improved weather proofing will increase comfort levels for occupants, reduce drafts and heating bills, and increase the sturdiness and serviceability of the building.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Restoration of Manilla House and construction of two luxury apartments, Mullingar town centre.

We were chosen as main contractor for the renovation of a large town house and the construction of two new apartment units at the rear. Access to the site was limited. Careful consideration had to be taken towards the movement of plant and materials.

Road opening licenses were obtained for service connections to water and sewer lines in the street. These works were carried out at night to minimise disruption to traffic.

The character of Manilla House was retained during the sensitive renovation, while the architect's design met all current building regulations.

Four quality town centre apartments were created, close to all services, allowing residents the choice of freedom from car ownership and bringing life back to this area of Mullingar town.

Autistic Care Unit, Milltownpass National School, Milltownpass, Co. Westmeath

Following a competitive tender process, we were awarded the contract to construct this additional wing specially designed for the care of pupils with autistic spectrum disorders (ASD) within Milltownpass National School. 

Works included building structure and fabric, provision of all services, full fit-out and landscaping.

Tying the new building into the existing structure while maintaining normal school operations was a challenge. 

The majority of the work was completed during the short summer holidays, allowing this vital new teaching resource to be opened for the new school year.