The Houl

Simon Winstanley Architects, Castle Douglas, 2009


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  • East elevation    
  • North elevation    
  • Plan    
  • Section    
  • South elevation    
  • West elevation    
  • Glazing and patio door detail    

Single storey 'zero carbon' house that is recessed into its landscape

The building achieves a 'zero carbon' rating by using high levels of insulation, whole house heat recovery ventilation, an air source heat pump and a wind turbine.

The entrance to the house is sited on the north-east side of the house under the cover of the roof to provide shelter from the prevailing wind. The principal rooms are situated along the contour of the site to enjoy the views across the valley to the west, with the ancillary service spaces to the rear.

The slope of the roof of the main living space follows the slope of the hillside, with the roof of the rear accommodation meeting the main roof at a shallower angle, to allow morning sunlight to penetrate the centre of the house through clerestory windows.

The house is constructed with a steel and timber frame with walls clad in cedar weatherboarding and the roof is finished with pre-weathered grey standing seam zinc. Windows are triple glazed with a thermally broken timber frame.


  • Begun: Oct 2008
  • Completed: Dec 2009
  • Floor area: 182m2
  • Sector: House
  • Total cost: £306,000
  • Procurement: Scottish Minor Works
  • Address: The Houl, Dalry, Castle Douglas, DG7 3UB, United Kingdom

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