Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ergo » Sun Oct 01, 2006 11:19 pm

Any advice on where I can get my hands on books with specific Victorian or Georgian House plans from the UK / Ireland. Countless internet searches reveal only US victorian house plan books and the styles are radically different to this side of the world. I need them in relation to an upcoming planning application. Any tips/advice warmly welcomed. Thanks.
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby Bren88 » Mon Oct 02, 2006 12:57 am

A little info on the upcoming application might help your search.
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ergo » Mon Oct 02, 2006 4:43 pm

Bren88 - thanks. A little more info. The site in question is a residential site in county cork. There is a partially demolished ruin on the site of an old victorian house, and according to the owner there appears to have been an earlier (now demolished) georgian residence on the site. Unfortunately no plans or pictures exist of the previous properties.

The client wishes to put a new home on the site but wants the design is to be a replica victorian or georgian residence in keeping with what went before. The approximate size of property he is seeking is between 2000 and 3500 sq ft.

With the above in mind I am seeking books with residential designs and house plans from the georgian and victorian periods. Of course I have searched on Amazon (US & UK) and they reveal lots of victorian house
plan books but all from the US victorian period (radically different to UK/Irish victorian style), and any georgian books I have been able to find seem to be more about the internal style rather than period house plans.

All ideas welcome.
Thanks
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ctesiphon » Mon Oct 02, 2006 5:01 pm

There is a variety of books available, if not for purchase then for library loan, that would contain plans of both Georgian and Victorian houses. Is it terraced or detached? Urban or rural? Are there others in the vicinity of a similar design/plan type that could be measured?

Maurice Craig's 'Classic Irish Houses of the Middle Size' contains a good range of plans from the 18th and 19th centuries, for example, and it has just been reprinted after far too long unavailable for purchase at a reasonable price. But this is just one example- most quality books on Irish architectural history will contain a few plans. (In fact, quality can often be measured by whether they contain plans or not, in that anyone can point a camera at a building, but getting an accurate plan requires an amount of knowledge and a dedication to a subject lacking in the more half-assed publications on 'heritage buildings' etc.)

Bear in mind, though, that in many people's eyes it would be as wrong to build, say, a Co Westmeath Georgian house in Co Cork as it would be to build an American Victorian house in Co Cork. Regional variations were numerous in the 18th/19th centuries and give buildings the character that can be lacking in a building copied from a book of plans, so it'd be as important to familiarise yourself with local materials, historic skills, and subtle regional variations (camber-headed windows vs flat-arched windows; render types; slate patterns on roofs; fanlight design) as it would with the general principles of either period in question (symmetry vs asymmetry; tripartite vs spine wall/double-pile; staircase position; etc.). Again, Craig's '...Middle Size' has much to say on this matter.

Lastly, an accurate measured survey of the site in question would yield much valuable info- wall thicknesses, construction methods, materials, etc. might tell you if there are two (or more) phases, and would (should) be your first point of departure in any proposal.
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ergo » Mon Oct 02, 2006 5:51 pm

ctesiphon - Thank you for that great reference on Craig's book, I will pick it up immedately. With reference to some excellent points you raised, the setting is rural west cork area and the site is almost entirely wooded, the site is part of a larger country estate which would have been an old country seat of the landed gentry until the turn of the twentieth century. The main house is now in private hands and is neither visible nor accessible to the public and to my knowledge there are no published pictures of the property's facade. The client has suggested the ruin may have been either the home of a family member of the owner of the main house and/or a "glebe" house. The site size is approximately 2 - 2.5 acreas.

Any further references on victorian, georgion period properties house would be warmly welcomed. And of course any such references with cork or west cork specific designs would be a real find !
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby Paul Clerkin » Mon Oct 02, 2006 6:13 pm

Have you gone into the Irish Architectural Archive? and done a search?
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby Praxiteles » Mon Oct 02, 2006 6:48 pm

Do not forget to take at look at Anna-Maria Hajba's Houses of Cork, vol. 1, North Cork, published by Ballinakella Press, Whitegate, Co. Clare in 2002 ISBN 0946 538433. Other volumes were supposed to have been published but I have yet seen any of them.
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ergo » Mon Oct 02, 2006 6:59 pm

Paul Clerkin wrote:Have you gone into the Irish Architectural Archive? and done a search?



Thanks Paul. Yes indeed the IAA is on my list, however before undertaking a trip to Dublin I wanted to narrow down the client requirements by showing them some options before undertaking a more specific IAA search. Unless I am mistaken the IAA is not yet available electronically, wouldn't it be terrific if it was !
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ergo » Mon Oct 02, 2006 7:01 pm

Praxiteles wrote:Do not forget to take at look at Anna-Maria Hajba's Houses of Cork, vol. 1, North Cork, published by Ballinakella Press, Whitegate, Co. Clare in 2002 ISBN 0946 538433. Other volumes were supposed to have been published but I have yet seen any of them.


Thanks Praxiteles,great reference I've added this one to my list also !

This board really is a timesaver, I am very grateful to you all for the suggestions, the more the merrier thanks again.
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ctesiphon » Mon Oct 02, 2006 11:50 pm

Something else occurred to me. Before your trip to the IAA, have a look at Mark Bence-Jones's book on Irish country houses if you can. It lists all the houses with which he's personally familiar (and that's many- roughly 2000). There's no county/geographical index unfortunately, but if you have the name of the house then it's worth checking out, as that's how the book is organised.

Original title: Burke's Guide to Country Houses, Volume 1: Ireland (Burke's Peerage, 1978)
Revised edition: A Guide to Irish Country Houses (Constable, 1988).
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby GrahamH » Tue Oct 03, 2006 3:28 am

That book sounds fascinating - must get my hands on a copy too!

The fact that your client is looking for a "Victorian or Georgian" residence ergo is perhaps suggestive of a desire for a general 'old' design, without necessarily aping either period given the complexity of establishing former structures - would this be the case? Needless to say there is a world of difference to the two as you know (admittedly less so in early-mid 19th century modest houses).

Generally speaking, Regency and Victorian designs seem to go down much better with people when it comes to building replicas; the combination of large windows and elegant restrained decoration is generally preferred to the 'acquired taste' of austere Irish Georgian. It is also arguably more suited to modern-day living with regards layout and scaled down interior spaces.

This fondness would appear to be supported by the bizarre amount if early 1990s Regency-style villas that feature in the likes of The Sunday Times property supplement every few weeks - single storey, long, low-lying 'villas' with all the detailing of an 1830ish house, if often clunikly proportioned and detailed. Most however are pretty good from a distance at least, and so is perhaps an option to consider.

Two-storey versions are also available :) - like this, if a little more austere than many.

Image

Test: Is this an original or not ctesiphon? ;)
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ctesiphon » Tue Oct 03, 2006 3:11 pm

I note with interest, Graham, that the image size is smaller than your usual.;) But I'll try anyway.

At a guess, it's not a replica, or if it is it uses some older materials such as slates. It looks like an older house that has been considerably refurbished- walls very smooth and neat, etc. Although the front door or whatever it is in the porch looks most odd- a new door in an old ope, or evidence of a high quality repro throughout?

I'll say mid-19th century, and I'll prepare to hang my head in shame. (This is revenge for the Redbrick wall/Ladies in Red, isn't it?:) )

PS Re the Craig book- everyone should have it. Probably the best introduction to the evolution of the Irish country house available. It's been out of print for years and changing hands for silly money on the www. The day I saw it in a Dublin bookshop my heart skipped a beat. I've been waiting 10 years for this moment. But, like the taxi plates, I feel a little sorry for anyone who bought an original just before the republication.
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ergo » Tue Oct 03, 2006 5:34 pm

GrahamH wrote:That book sounds fascinating - must get my hands on a copy too!

The fact that your client is looking for a "Victorian or Georgian" residence ergo is perhaps suggestive of a desire for a general 'old' design, without necessarily aping either period given the complexity of establishing former structures - would this be the case? Needless to say there is a world of difference to the two as you know (admittedly less so in early-mid 19th century modest houses).

Generally speaking, Regency and Victorian designs seem to go down much better with people when it comes to building replicas]Test[/B]: Is this an original or not ctesiphon? ;)


GrahamH - Great post and tips thanks ! I take on board your good point about the Regency/Victorian style villa being more scalable to todays needs when building a replica. Frankly the client is not precisely clear as to what he wants at this time other than he definitely wants a replica of a period victorian possibly georgian home probably single storey. Hence this fishing trip ! He is a long term client on other projects and so we want to go the extra mile and bring lots of ideas to the table. Any reference pictures/books/plans on single storey Regency type properties would also be appreciated.
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby GrahamH » Wed Oct 04, 2006 12:56 am

This link may be of interest to you ergo, indeed you might have seen it when broadcast a few years ago. A Grand Designs Regency villa project. Unfortunately we never saw the house finished, so can't really make any judgement. The attention to fenestration and some other detail was superb, but most glaringly of all the basic structural proportions seem to have been off the wall, literally.


ctesiphon wrote:It looks like an older house that has been considerably refurbished - walls very smooth and neat, etc.


Oy! No wriggling out of this one matey - covering all corners is not permitted! :D

Ah no, you did well. It is indeed a genuine Georgian: Springfield House in Portlaw Co. Waterford.
Mid-19th century is a bit late for that level of austerity though do you not think - hence it's dated rather appropriately at c.1820.
Also correct regarding refurbishment –] http://www.buildingsofireland.ie/niah/i ... 3033_4.jpg[/img]

The porch is lovely however - nothing like a good diastyle in antis Doric portico first thing in the morning.

Read all about it on the NIAH site ;)
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ctesiphon » Wed Oct 04, 2006 1:31 am

Ha!
I'll let you in on a little secret- the first time Co Waterford was surveyed for the NIAH, I was involved in the latter stages. But for some reason the management saw fit not to publish it and to resurvey it all from scratch. Sure it's only taxpayers' money.:rolleyes: So I'm a little surprised I didn't actually remember the house. Or maybe I did and I'm just leading you on...;)

Another secret? My first guess was c.1825-1830, but I got cold feet for some reason and went for the more general (evasive) mid-C19th. Out of practice, I suppose.

The reason I guessed original rather than repro were:
Window to wall ratio;
Low sills;
Lack of basement;
Wide eaves; and
Tripartite plan.
I'm not sure a new-build would have got these right.

But perhaps most tellingly, it was the simple garden and two very ordinary cars in the driveway.:) If it were a repro, the garden would look like the flora version of a Baroque chapel interior and the cars would be far more ostentatious.

Seriously, though, there's an air of elegant simplicity about the whole that is usually missed in repro new builds, which generally try much too hard with bolt-on frilly ironwork, too much glass / bay windows in the wrong places, railed lightwells for basements even on house types that wouldn't have had them, raised plaster quoins, etc. And where they get the details right enough, the proportions are often wrong. (That's why I was curious about the door- seemed like a modern mis-step.)

Anyway, glad to know my rep is intact. Heh.

(Ergo- I hope you're taking notes.:) )
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby KerryBog2 » Wed Oct 04, 2006 11:01 am

A great source for house styles in any locality is the Lawrence Photographic Collection (C.1906) in the National Library. Thankfully it provides a photographic record of most of the important houses that were burnt down in the Twenties. It also shows scenic views that frequently contain a view of the local big house (The landlords knew where to build!) Bence-Jones' book, (from memory, his father was a rector in W. Cork so he is good on that area) is great, particularly for period interior shots, but most of the photos relate to the "grander" style house, and not the plainer middle-size house, which usually are not illustrated. Many of the photos in that book are attributed to the Lawrences.

I imagine that big house architecture in W. Cork would also be influenced by S. Kerry (and vice-a-versa) so a look at Franklin Fuller's S. Kerry houses would be worthwhile. His mother was a local"Big House" girl, a Bland from Derryquin Castle, and he designed/remodelled many houses on the Bland Estate around Sneem (extensions to Derryquin and the Bishop's House at Parknasilla, and family or relatives’ houses such as Askive, Dromina, Glascnacree, Hollywood, Reenafurra, etc.) He also redesigned Dereen for Lord Lansdowne. See http://www.iarc.ie/cgi-bin/biographical.cgi for records on Fuller.

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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ergo » Fri Oct 06, 2006 3:20 pm

[quote="GrahamH"]This link may be of interest to you ergo, indeed you might have seen it when broadcast a few years ago. A Grand Designs Regency villa project. Unfortunately we never saw the house finished, so can't really make any judgement. The attention to fenestration and some other detail was superb, but most glaringly of all the basic structural proportions seem to have been off the wall, literally.


GrahamH - Another useful link, I appreciate that. I have to agree the look of the finished building looks asymmetrical to say the least !! Such a shame as a key feature of properties of this period and design is their beautiful symmetry.
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby ergo » Fri Oct 06, 2006 3:23 pm

KerryBog2 wrote:A great source for house styles in any locality is the Lawrence Photographic Collection (C.1906) in the National Library. Thankfully it provides a photographic record of most of the important houses that were burnt down in the Twenties. It also shows scenic views that frequently contain a view of the local big house (The landlords knew where to build!) Bence-Jones' book, (from memory, his father was a rector in W. Cork so he is good on that area) is great, particularly for period interior shots, but most of the photos relate to the "grander" style house, and not the plainer middle-size house, which usually are not illustrated. Many of the photos in that book are attributed to the Lawrences.

I imagine that big house architecture in W. Cork would also be influenced by S. Kerry (and vice-a-versa) so a look at Franklin Fuller's S. Kerry houses would be worthwhile. His mother was a local"Big House" girl, a Bland from Derryquin Castle, and he designed/remodelled many houses on the Bland Estate around Sneem (extensions to Derryquin and the Bishop's House at Parknasilla, and family or relatives’]http://www.iarc.ie/cgi-bin/biographical.cgi[/url] for records on Fuller.

KB2


Kerry - I am in your debt for these very helpful and southwest specific period property references.

I am so glad I posted here, thanks to all for your invaluable help it has saved me countless and probably
many fruitless research hours !
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby KerryBog2 » Fri Oct 06, 2006 5:53 pm

A few photos:
First is Askive House, burned in 22 and partly rebuilt in the '30s
Second is view of the Bishops House (now "restored" as staff quarters for GSH Parknasilla
Third is Hollywood, burned (?) derelict, now replaced by a pseudo Victorian house
Last is the old Rosdohan house.
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby KerryBog2 » Fri Oct 06, 2006 7:23 pm

Rear view of the Bishops House and the front of Rosdohan - the latter designed by Seddon c1975, who, I've been told, was a pioneer in bungalow design and the cause of its introduction to England. Hopefully the Bishop's House will be improved and the crap windows removed when it is converted to apartments ......
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby djasmith » Tue May 27, 2008 6:04 pm

ah here I go bring back old threads again. A couple of google searches showed up this posting.

Im planning ahead for my leaving cert construction project starting next september. I plan to construct a georgian sash window, which I've managed to get planty of drawings etc of general sash windows (not specifically original georgian style, mainly modern replicas), and Ive even got some work experience with a joiner in making sash's.

For my written project, I want to do a comparative study between a georgian townhouse (eg fitzwilliam street), and a modern townhouse. My main point it that Fitzwilliam street is still standing after nearly 300 years, and well modern townhouses just done last as long.....

My main studies are basic wall construction, roof construction, jointing methods, door arches etc. I intend to pay a visit to the irish georgian society in Merrion Square (anyone know can you just call in or do you have to ring in advance or what??), and also have a browse around the libraries etc.

What should I be looking for in terms of books, for info on details on construction techniques etc, and more importantly, accurate details on window construction from the 18th Century.

Regards in advance,
Dave.
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Re: Victorian / Georgian House Plan Books

Postby liamdenn » Mon Jan 18, 2010 11:50 am

Hello All. Upon the recommendation of this thread I purchased the Maurice Craig book. It is a fantasic read however I was hoping for more vernacular examples. Any advice?
Many thanks,
Liam
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