LMN09

INSPIRATION

He is an artist his wife Paula is a Garda; they have 7 children. He works at the Leitrim Sculpture Centre and teaches art. His work is about reclaiming materials and objects.
Bought the land to build on, with over 100 acres, much of which is now planted with trees.
Saw a straw-bale building at CAT in Wales and was inspired to build a straw house himself. He liked the seemingly simplicity of the build.  His house was one of the first straw-bale buildings in Ireland.
The frame went up in 1998, bales went in in 1999. It took two years to complete and admits it was really hard work and that, if he’d known what he knows now he wouldn’t have taken it on.
The house attracted a lot of attention from passers-by.  People visited and before long they became fed up with the curious visitor and stopped people visiting as much as possible. Felt people were being nosey rather than wanting to learn from the experience.


TYPE OF HOUSE

Timber frame straw bale building.


POINT OF INTEREST


ECO ELEMENTS

Not a priority when building or when planning how to build.


CREATIVE ELEMENTS

Large open spaces, room divided by a large tree trunk. Stairs spiral up the tree trunk to the two floors. Designed by a sculptor for a large family.


ARCHITECT/DESIGN BY

He designed it himself.

BUILDER

Self with some help from a carpenter and roofer.


MATERIALS

Foundations Concrete, damp proofed.
Walls Timber frame and straw bales. Hemp and lime render inside and out.
Roof Cedar shingles. Wanted to thatch it but couldn’t find anybody to do it.
Insulation Rock wool, would like to expand it to make it more efficient.
Finishings Tree trunk in centre of living room.  6 Tonne, built around it.

HEAT SOURCE

Oil boiler for radiators and wood burner.


WATER SOURCE

Mains. Their well had too much iron.


WASTE

Septic tank.


GARDEN

100 acres trees.


ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Planning: Not a problem
Time Scale: two years
Satisfaction Rating: Very happy but can see the changing needs of his family means the house may or may not suit them in years to come.

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