Tommy Barker is enamoured with a barn conversion where country living is easy

Ballinhassig, Cork
€450,000
Size: 162 sq m (1,750 sq ft)
Bedrooms: 4
Bathrooms: 4
BER: B2

NOT only is the Ballyheady, Ballinhassig property on two acres called The Barn ideal for those who love animals, it also back in its earlier days actually accommodated them... as the barn name might suggest.

Originally an old-world simple cottage in the late 1800s, it was adapted for use for keeping livestock for a while, and in the 1950s went back to domestic usage, when a first floor with extra living space was added on.

In its century-plus of history, it also housed a home butter cottage industry, as much of its kin of the time did, and its fates churned again in 2007, when it was bought and renovated by its current occupants, to the very comfortable level now witnessed on a visit.

It’s fresh inside and out, and fresh on the market this past week with Johnny O’Flynn of Sherry FitzGerald in Cork City, who says the renovation levels and comforts are stunning.

The refashioning saw the owners insert a timber framed build inside the old stone walls, adding even further to the depth of those same walls, and it all is so well insulated it now gets a B2 BER rating. If a new owner decided to hook up for solar panels (and it is plumbed for this already) the 125-year old “barn” could hit an A rating, says Mr O’Flynn.

Location is a few miles off the main road out from Cork city towards West Cork, 2 kms from Halfway and close too to the expanding Eli Lilly plant at Dunderrow by Kinsale, so next occupants could come from a range of backgrounds.

It’s ideal for a lifestyle locater, says Johnny O’Flynn thanks to its two acres, with a one acre paddock to the back quite self-contained, and ideal for ponies.

Already, there’s a stable to hand on the property, which is reached up a long alnd and is private.

Rooms include a hall, a living room with a gas stove in a corner stone surround, a full-depth kitchen/diner with black granite tops, a family room or optional bed four, plus utility.

Overhead are three bedrooms with en suite master bedroom, and the other two share a bathroom in a “Jack & Jill” arrangement, while the main bathroom has a double ended bath.

Externally the gardens are as immaculate as the interiors.

VERDICT: Country living made easy at this stone and timber-built barn conversion.


Lifestyle

Overshadowed by its giant neighbours it may be, but the smallest of the main Blasket islands, Beginish, is no less impressive in its own right.The Islands of Ireland: The miracle of Beginish

‘The days of our years are threescore years and ten — Psalm 90How to tell an animal’s age in a heartbeat

We often hear how nature will do well, even come back from the brink of extinction, if given a chance and some human help.Birds of prey on the rise

In our country we still have places that bear no evidence of disturbance by man, that are in their pristine state and rich with all the elements that feed the spirit and deliver us into the world beyond the skin of the time and circumstances we live in.Unique ambience of Dursey Island under threat

More From The Irish Examiner