Rock Cottage

Location: Argyll, Scotland | Status: Completed


Rebuilding of Loch Side Cottage in Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

The original Rock Cottage, a modest two storey house on the banks of Loch Goil (a sea loch) set in a National Park and Area of Ancient Woodland, was constructed in the 1950s. It was a family dwelling until 2009 when the owner occupier passed away.


The property was then purchased in 2010 by an adjoining owner who instructed Miller Architects to produce a scheme for the property for repair, improvement and refurbishment.


The construction of the building had evolved over the years utilising any material to hand in the area, concrete blocks, bricks, timber, metal casements, asbestos cement sheeting and other assorted bits and pieces standing on minimal, and in some places no, foundations. It quickly became clear that repair and refurbishment would not be possible as the fabric of the building was extremely dilapidated and rebuilding the only viable option.


Exposed to the elements the loch-side site presented an interesting design challenge as to what to replace it with given the planning and environmental constraints of a National Park and Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the difficulties of a remote, wet and sloping site, comprising of rock, alluvial deposits and peaty soils.


A bespoke two storey dwelling based on a traditional West Highland Croft, constructed from wood on solid foundations with high levels of insulation, solar generation and a design sympathetic to the natural beauty of the surrounding area became the preferred design solution. There was also the need to provide approved water treatment to discharge into the loch.


Construction was completed on time and on budget. In 2016 Rock Cottage was certified as EPC Band A for Environmental Impact.