What a story they would tell and the walls of Knockdene would have many a tale to tell.Conceived in 1905 the house is Victorian in style with double fronted bay windows and classical internal proportions. The exterior is of red Belfast brick with typical brick detailing around the centrally located door and under the
eaves and the main gables. Originally the building held a rear return subservient in nature but in modern times redundant given its small overall proportion.
The building nestled in a tree lined road situated behind the busy Newtownards Road was tired and run down when discovered by the Clients. It had endured 100 years of life with little attention both externally and internally. Our clients had the vision to see through this tired facade and realise this house had the potential to give them the perfect family home. The client’s brief was to create a home that would provide a living/dining/kitchen area on the ground floor with associated
utility/gym and double garage. The upper floor would provide a master bedroom with en-suite and dressing room with a further 4 bedrooms and 3 en-suites. This added nearly 2400sqft to the existing house giving a substantial family home. The house was to be minimalist in its design and approach. The concept was to create a new living space to the house connected by a link along the East – West Axis, a continuation of the original axial layout. Transparency became a key criteria with the desire for the design to allow visual connections through the scheme. The front living room has a large picture window facing into the Courtyard which allows views into the new double height living area and into the glass link. The balcony above the double height living space provides visual
interaction from the first floor hall. Views into both the gardens and the courtyards are maintained through large glazed doors. A Creston home automation system was specified within the main living areas of the house, providing integrated control of electric blinds, lighting, audio and high definition video. All elements of the system can be controlled via multiple inputs, such as wall mounted touch panels, switches, i-Devices and hard button remote controls. A
key objective was to maintain the clean contemporary lines of the overall design, so the hardware is all wired back to a concealed central source, and any visible speakers were selected for their low visual impact. A simple palette of materials was selected for both the internal and external finishes of the house. Externally a red brick was selected to compliment the existing brick and Iroko timber was used to clad the double height living space.
Internally beautiful natural coloured tiles were used for the main living areas, walls where paint finished in shades of white.
Landscaping was considered early in the project to allow for areas where children could play and where the sun would heat the rear
courtyard. Paving is simple Tobermore Granite Sets with little walls forming areas for perimeter planting. Iroko gates complete the entrance to this family
home. Time will nurture the gardens and settle this house into the environment that it richly deserves.