Craftsman’s dream house makes the most of idyllic surroundings

A CARPENTER in the know put his know-how, passion, energy and ingenuity into building Brookside, as bright and fresh today as when it was first built, 20 years ago.

On a great site just over the brow of a hill from Cork city, the four-bedroom home is the sort of place that gives the usually staid dormer style of building a bit of panache and character.

Situated on a half acre, with a stream at its boundary (diverted into two ponds and waterfalls in the grounds here) which feeds into the Curraheen River, the setting is sylvan, up in a valley’s folds above the main Bandon road, and is reached along the Spur Hill Road out of Wilton, a five-minute spin by car from the western suburbs.

The surrounds are pure country, with large dairy farms surrounding it and wooded valley views as a backdrop to its distinctive graveled and tiered gardens, making extensive use of old rail sleepers as retainers.

And, Brookside’s own building materials suit its setting perfectly, especially in current autumn hues.

Guided at a highly achievable €660,000 by agent Jarlath Boyd of Savills (the Hamilton Osborne King name is now being dropped by the estate agency’s UK owners), this house is extensively finished in a sympathetic brick, sourced in Bedfordshire, with wide cedar sheeting, and cedar timbers are also used for external doors and window frames: Even the roof tiles, punctuated by rows of Velux windows, have a mellow look to them.

The grounds also have stone walls, wooden gates and wood-capped pillars, and thoughtful planting has seen oak, chestnut and hornbeam trees established in the grounds, thought the pond and waterfalls are the real scene-stealers.

This was a house that sailed through the planning process back in the early ’80s, with its wood-worker owner behind the design as well, adapting examples he liked in Scandinavia, and he pretty much built the place himself as well, to a meticulous level.

It is steel-framed, well insulated, bright and warm, with a largely open-plan set-up in the main living area, and an interconnecting sun room, kitchen and dining area getting the benefit of the southerly aspect and garden and wood views.

There’s also a study, a family room, a big utility and boot room, while the kitchen has Rational units with Miele appliances.

Quality joinery work adorns the inside, with Colombian pine, red deal and cedar in abundance; the open tread stairs is in mahogany, with a black piped side handrail, and floors are a mix of tile and Junkers beech.

There’s a ground-floor shower room, and overhead are four bedrooms, a dressing room or optional fifth bedroom or en suite, and a main bathroom, a walk-in hotpress, and access via pull-down stairs to floored attic storage.

Heating is via oil, and apart from the parking areas and patios there’s also a garage with roller door.


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