A timber and masonry house by RX Architects forms a strong connection with its coastal site


Richard Chivers

Designed by RX Architects, Druim is a two-storey house located on a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) in Winchelsea, East Sussex. Set within Rye Nature Reserve, the project involves the reconfiguration and remodelling of an existing unfinished detached house. Central to the brief was to expand and improve the living accommodation and internal layout. Maximising daylighting and views out across the nature reserve towards the sea were also key considerations.


A ‘replacement’ first floor accommodates three bedrooms and two bathrooms, as well as a centrally-located library snug. The latter opens out onto a recessed, timber-lined terrace with a glass balustrade. A cantilever on the west elevation forms a covered entrance canopy that provides protection from the elements.

Ground and first-floor plans

The ground floor is planned around a large, open-plan kitchen, living and dining space. The staircase runs up and around a central brick chimney with slot views to the rear. Generous full-height sliding doors and windows provide high levels of daylighting and a strong visual connection to the surrounding landscape.

The interior finishes include exposed brick, polished concrete, and timber flooring and joinery. Externally, the building comprises a robust, dark-coloured brick base with timber cladding on the first floor. A detached, single-storey, timber-clad annex houses a games room, living space, bedroom and bathroom.

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