Holiday accommodation is a good way of making use of houses that have character but are too small or unconventional for everyday use. The owner of the buildings at Ballydugan Old Town near Downpatrick had agreed to sell Ivy Cottage on one side of the road to a private buyer, but wanted to make the house on the other side of the road, with its straggling line of outbuildings, into holiday cottages.
The two contracts were carried out at the same time and by the same builder to ensure consistency. At Ivy Cottage a sizeable extension was built in the style of a barn that had formerly stood behind it, and Huddleston’s Cottage was restored with two other houses created from its outbuildings. Some of these had been roofless for many years, some of the rubblestone walls had been bedded in clay rather than mortar. Amongst the surviving features of interest were some ancient timber lintels, a cobbled floor and simple wooden shutters, all of which were retained.