Re: Re: ‘Dutch Billys’

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Fantastic gabled houses in Limerick, CologneMike. That five storey is incredible. Very ‘pure’ influence there. A high grade import from the Netherlands of a different kind…

Just passing the Parnell Street Billies this evening, I just knew given their dishevelled state that they’d have to retain their original corner chimney breasts in the shops. And just like clockwork :):

Back to back.

Wonderful stuff. Billies are so predictable: where they do survive they nearly always follow a common pattern of being a black sheep for nearly all of their life – always the budget conversion, never the bride. Hence the common survial of the basic structure, with basic cosmetic changes.

What I love about the first shop above is you can sense as clear as anything the smallness and intimacy of the original living room when you stand in the shop. It’s got a lovely domestic scale – you can just imagine a roaring corner fire, cosy timber panelling, a heavy timber cornice, and creaky floorboards beneath you feet. Love to get exploring in there.

It’s very interesting gunter that you should highlight the proliferation of Billies formerly on Henry Street prior to eradication in 1916. I’ve often wondered the reasoning for the popularity of Billy Revival along the southern side of the street in the late 1910s – it didn’t feature anywhere else in the extensive post-1916 reconstructions.

(there are better examples than this)

There seems little doubt that a clear reference was being drawn from past forms by Dublin architects as far back as the early 20th century. Pity we’ve become so unimaginative in the ensuing 90 years.

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