Design Guide for Rural Northern Ireland
Traditional Qualities: Evolution
Traditionally, development of a site in a rural area required many years, even generations, of hard work. Technology and materials changed little, but slight improvements and enlargements took place over the years. Limited technology encouraged certain patterns of extension and it was always cheaper to use one wall of the existing building.
It made sense, too, for the newer buildings to be occupied as the dwelling house (generally being bigger and better build). The older dwelling house was therefore often given over to animals or storage. A pattern of steady development of a linked series of buildings emerged, usually starting off in a line and then turning a corner, perhaps forming 3 or even 4 sides of a courtyard.