39 Coplands Drive


The new house is sited directly next to Stromness Harbour with great views of the Hoy hills to the south. The design was generated to respect the wonderful existing townscape of old Stromness, which has developed organically, with gables and piers to the sea while adding a contemporary addition to the waterfront.  The quality of the light reflecting across the water is welcomed into the house with floor to ceiling south-west facing corner windows maximising views down the harbour. There was also the desire by the clients, Paul and Angela, to create a new home with versatility designed into its present and future way of functioning. 

The house is built as two separate buildings with a single storey link allowing the house to operate as a large single family house or, as times change, two autonomous houses for the younger or older generation and family to cohabit with privacy for both. 

The built form is drawn from the Stromness vernacular of low stone crofts and larger boat sheds with their gables to the sea.

The stone-built croft element has a grass roof and is traditionally proportioned with a modern west elevation facing the sea with large windows and larch cladding. The local reclaimed stone cladding to the croft has been carefully detailed and built with new stone skews and skewputs to the south gable and pointed with lime mortar. The grass roof is a local mix of native wildflowers and grasses which encourages bio-diversity.

The larger 'boat shed' element is at right angles to the croft sheltering the south-west facing garden from the north winds. The untreated larch cladding will silver with age and let the building mellow into its natural environment. The profiled metal roof adds a crisp, light industrial contrast to the stone cladding and turf roof of the croft.

Sustainability was a driving force of the design. Natural and local building materials have been sourced where possible and the construction is well insulated with solar income maximised.

Paul and Angela, both of whom are qualified landscape architects are working on the garden to compliment the house and wider environment.

The house was a design and build project carried out by Phillips and Green, the sister company of 59 degrees north. All aspects of work, excluding plumbing and electrics, were built by Martin Phillips and Sam Green from shaping stone skews, installing EPDM rubber wildflower roofs to the internal finishings.

Coplands drive 2
East gable
Coplands view harbour
Coplands grass roof
Coplands drive 3
Coplands Drive front door
Coplands drive
Stone skewput_edited