Ackling Cook Bothy / Reiach and Hall Architects

Courtesy of

Architects: Reiach And Hall Architects
Location: Ettrick Valley,
Main Contractor: Robert Reid Joinery and Building
Structural Engineer: SKM OneSixty
Mechanical Engineer: K J Tait
Photographs: Courtesy of Reiach And Hall Architects

The bothy is a refurbishment and extension of a remote cottage carried out for two artists, Roger Ackling and Martin Cook, and their families. The extension, clad in black charred timber slats, lies as a shadow behind the main house, whose accommodation has been opened up in section and plan to provide a bright, modern living space. The stone cottage is of the landscape, and rests in the landscape, with no conscious boundary or garden.

Courtesy of Reiach and Hall Architects

Roger’s work centres around drawing, drawing by means of the sun. He burns exquisite marks and patterns, using a magnifying glass, on pieces of found wood. The wood is always jetsam. Once useful but now discarded these pieces are rediscovered as works of art.


Reiach and Hall viewed the existing bothy almost as building jetsam, a once useful shelter that has now been abandoned. The architectural challenge was about how to renovate this shell and how to extend it on a limited budget in a remote location.

Courtesy of Reiach and Hall Architects

The concept for the new extension is a shadow on the hill. Imagining enlightenment from the North, a shadow is cast southwards from the basic bothy form. This idea combines notions and passions about Scotland and the North coupled with an understanding and reference to Roger’s work.

Shadow Concept
Cite: "Ackling Cook Bothy / Reiach and Hall Architects" 27 Jul 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed 27 May 2015. <>
  • Tosh

    A very nice, beautiful project. This proves once again that architects should be allowed to design only in the countryside. Leave the cities to urban designers..

    • me

      Tosh, your comment doesn’t even begin to make any sense. I’m somewhat hesitant to ask you to elaborate.

  • h.a.

    best Scottish practice!!
    urban designers? I wonder why everything is so specialized in this country!! soon there will be pavement designers, facade designers, window designers and all signal of architecture will be gone

    • David

      I like this guy. By the way, we of the Pavement Alliance are having a guest speaker this week. “Gravel, grit or glamour.” is the subject of discussion.

  • alex

    thumbs down to ‘shadow concept’ and big thumbs down to tosh’s ‘urban designer’ comment