the project

This is a sensitive newbuild, constructed in the grounds of an existing A-listed Leiper-designed Victorian mansion of significant architectural note. The proposal is to dismantle a disused garage, and build a single-storey one-bedroom dwelling where the garage stood, reusing original timber and red sandstone in the construction.
The compact newbuild is subservient to the main house, yet complements it, mirroring architectural ideas without detracting from its grandeur. The design also allows it to have its own secluded private terrace to the east, and captures sea views. The new building is flexible in terms of use, and could serve as an annex to the main house, be used for guests, or as holiday accommodation, extending the possibilities of the site into the future.

How we worked

We have completed several similar projects to this one, constructing new homes in the grounds of significant larger homes. They require great sensitivity at every stage of the design process, ensuring the integrity of the main house and landscaping is not compromised, but also that the new building has its own architectural merit and exists in harmony with its surrounds.

For this one, the exterior and interior reflect the traditional main house. A half-timbered gable detail matches features on the A-listed Leiper home, and a natural slate roof and feature chimney echo the roof and characteristic tall chimney features on the main house.


Extensive reuse of materials from the dismantled garage is key to this project. In particular, its traditional feel is enhanced by saving existing stone feature window surrounds and lintels for incorporation. Original materials are reused where possible and the highest standards of appropriate new building materials are used elsewhere, including new heritage timber sash and case windows. Every design detail helps bed the design into its surroundings.


Internally, the design features exposed timber rafters over a double-height open-plan lounge and dining area with the kitchen beneath the bedroom mezzanine. This creates a feeling of space despite the footprint of the newbuild being fairly limited. The visible timber joinery detailing in this house subtly nods to the style of the joinery and detailing in the neighbouring main house, typical of houses this period.

Success of the project

We anticipate that this newbuild will be extremely successful, enabling a flexible future for the whole site without causing detriment to its architectural heritage. As experts in traditional Scottish architecture, we love taking on this sort of project, ensuring that new buildings in the vicinity of important historic architecture do not jar, and are well considered and successful.