Sunday 22 September 2019

The architecture is Bauhaus, there's an indoor pool, and it's by the sea...

Sandown Channel Road, Rush, Co Dublin: €890,000

A sense of style at Sandown in the North Co Dublin village of Skerries — with indoor pool, plenty of light, a Rangemaster-equipped kitchen, and of course the nearby coastline
A sense of style at Sandown in the North Co Dublin village of Skerries — with indoor pool, plenty of light, a Rangemaster-equipped kitchen, and of course the nearby coastline
The nearby coastline at Sandown in the North Co Dublin village of Skerries.
The indoor pool at Sandown
Living in style at Sandown
The Rangemaster-equipped kitchen

Words by Katy McGuinness

There's a timeless, undeveloped feel to the North County Dublin village of Rush, and the approach down winding country roads makes it feel positively rural, even though it's only 20km from the city centre with direct rail and bus links. On a June morning the scent of elderflower blossom hangs in the air - it's time to go foraging and make cordial before another storm blows it all away - and there are glimpses of glasshouses through the hedges. Market gardening is everywhere in these parts.

The Roganstown Estuary is dotted with boats, and there looks to be a summer camp under way at Rush Sailing Club. On South Beach, the larger of Rush's two beaches, the kite-surfers will be out in force later; on sunny summer evenings, the smaller North Beach is where local teenagers gather for pier-jumping and high jinks.

Sandown on Channel Road has been the home of the Butterly family for the past 60 years, and Fiona and Nicholas Butterly, the current owners, are downsizing to spend more time in Portugal, where they also have a home. Nicholas grew up in the house with his three brothers and inherited it from his parents. Fiona and Nicholas have lived here since they married in 1995.

It's an unusual house with 446sqm of living space built in the Art Deco style in the early 1950s by the Moran family of Moran's Hotel on Talbot Street as a summer holiday house, in the days when Rush was a resort for people who lived in Dublin.

"Everyone in Rush knows Sandown," says Fiona on the phone from Portugal. "It's as if the house has a personality of its own. The architecture is Bauhaus. There used to be three very similar houses in the village, but the others have pitched roofs now and look very different. Ours is the only one that still looks the way that it did when it was built."

Originally, the footprint of Sandown was U-shaped, but what was a courtyard vegetable garden between the two wings has since been partially extended into and the donkey that Nicholas remembers grazing here when he was a child is long gone.

To the front of the house there's plenty of room for car parking, and two large holly trees that are covered with red berries each Christmas make decorating the inside of the house for the festivities a breeze.

A short flight of steps leads to a recessed and covered entrance porch, with a wall of glass brick on either side. The original bricks were replaced some years ago, but would have been very similar.

The kitchen is immediately opposite the front door. It has been refurbished and features an island unit and Rangemaster cooker. It's open plan with a dining/living area immediately behind, where there's a wood-burning stove to keep things cosy in winter. From here, there is direct access to the garden.

The reception room to the right of the front hall has tall bay windows and is currently used as a family television room. A corridor leads down one wing of the original U shape. There are three bedrooms, two of which are en suite.

A huge games room occupies the bay-windowed room to the left of the front door, and off this is a study, added when Fiona and Nicholas extended the house in 2001. At that time they added another sitting room and an indoor pool, currently unfilled but which will be attractive to families, with its own shower room. The poolside area is currently used as a gym. The fourth bedroom, also en suite, is on this side of the house.

New fencing in the garden indicates that plots on either side are not included in the sale - the Butterlys currently have no plans to build on these or to sell them. Sandown stands on a site of 0.8 acres, and would no doubt be on the market at a higher price if it was in either Malahide or Skerries, seen as more upmarket.

If Rush currently has a slightly dilapidated air, there are indications that all this is about to change.

Although there was site assembly in the early years of the noughties, very little development actually happened in the village. But permission has recently been granted for a discount supermarket in the town (there is already a branch of Tesco) as part of a three-phase redevelopment of the town centre and a new secondary school is in the pipeline.

Era: 1950s

Size: 446sqm

Agent: Kelly & Co (01) 849 1155

Viewing: By appointment

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