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RTÉ One,Sunday, 9.30pm
Dermot Bannon: Architect

Programme One - Dun Laoghaire

Room to ImproveRoom to ImproveRoom to Improve

Sunday 25th January at 9.30pm on RTÉ One

In the ten years since they first met Avril and Andrew Wilson-Rankin have been dreaming of owning their own home. Now they've bought a property in Dun Laoghaire south county Dublin but it's as far from being a home, or even a house, as you could imagine.

Andrew and Avril's dream home is a 2 storey disused commercial lockup on a side street, hemmed in by public pavement on one side and double yellow lines on the other. It's dark, dusty and - for now - completely uninhabitable.

To save the money needed for the renovation, the couple have moved into a tiny shomera at the bottom of Andrew's parents' garden in Clonskeagh with about as much space as the average henhouse!

Avril's vision of an urban dwelling complete with exposed brickwork, an internal bridge and mezzanine leaves Dermot struggling to unify his client's eclectic taste and faced with his most demanding design yet.

With just 260 thousand euro in the budget, Dermot pulls out all the stops to create a blueprint for a glorious urban conversion with a completely new internal layout, a mezzanine level, and an entire new floor with a garden overlooking the bay and butterfly roof.

At least that's the plan. But the logistical challenge of working on such a restricted site quickly put the budget and schedule under huge pressure. Dermot's young clients are hoping to be 'in before Christmas' but with major delays and serious design crises including a dispute over the shape of the new stairwell, their chances get slimmer with each passing day.

For once, it's not the strained budget or slipping schedule that's foremost on Dermot's mind - it's whether this hugely complex build can be completed at all.

See this first episode of the brand new series of Room to Improve on the 25th January at 9.30pm on RTÉ ONE.

Click here to view the Dun Laoghaire gallery...


The Warehouse" Dún Laoghaire

Main Contractor: D.H. Kidd /
[Damian, Pascal, Rafael, Frank, Adam, Aaron & team!]
Quantity Surveyor: Patricia Power /
Engineer: Ciaran O'Brien /

Suppliers, Trades & Contacts

Reclaimed Maple Strip Wall Cladding
Wilson's Yard / [Ian Copeland will give good advice]
Planed and fitted by
D.H. Kidd


Supplied and fitted by
Munster Joinery / [our contact was Darren Englishby]
Frosting film by
Magicvision, Dún Laoghaire / [ask for Hugh]

Steel supplied and fitted by
Finnegan Steel /
Joinery and glazing by D.H Kidd


Primary supplier of fittings, lamps & lighting design
National Lighting / [talk to Brendan McCormack, lighting guru!]

Electrical &
Ryetech / [our contact was Michael Bagnall]

Heating & Plumbing

Heating system & general plumbing
Design and installation
Green-house / [speak with Stephen O'Kane]
Heat pump distributor
Unipipe / [ask for Chris Dore for advice on Nibe heat pumps]

Roof support for heat pump
Design and supply
Moy Materials / [our contact was Peter Redmond]

Rainwater harvesting system
Experimental design by Andrew /

Advice and information
Waterways Environmental /
[talk to David Alexander]

Rainfall data provided by
DLH Weather / [used to sanity check size of tanks]

Installed by
Green-house / [speak with Stephen O'Kane]

Heat Recovery Ventilation
Design and installation
Pure Renewable Energy / [speak with Ollie McPhilips]

Air Tightness & BER
Design and installation
SC Air Tightness & Ventilation / [talk to Sean Coyle]
BER Assessment by Cian Brady / 087-644-7828

Colortrend - Ceramic Matt Interior & Weather Long Life Exterior from
Pat Macdonell Paints, Nutgrove /

Kitchen, Utility Room & Toilet
Ceramica, Kilkenny / [talk to Mary Barry for expert advice]

Bathroom Tiles
Right Price Tiles, Kylemore Road /

Tiling by
A1 Tiles & Bathrooms / [through D.H. Kidd]


All* sanitaryware, taps & accessories from
Ceramica, Kilkenny / [talk to Mary Barry for expert advice]

*except small hand basin and bathroom mirror from
Davies, Kilmacanogue /

Joinery & shower screen by
D.H. Kidd

Kitchen & Utility Room

Birch ply joinery, installation of appliances & worktops etc. by
D.H. Kidd

Cupboard mechanisms & worktop
Hafele / [talk to Dave Lynch or Leon Byrne]

All* from
in-house, Sallynoggin / [Joe White will see you right!]

*except dishwasher, from
DID Electrical, Tallaght /

Other kitchen/utility items
Sinks from
in-house, Deasgrange /

Kitchen tap from
QS Supplies Online /

Polished Concrete Floor
Kilsaran Concrete /

Timber Flooring
Junckers sourced from
Heiton Buckely, Ballymount /
[ask for Michael O'Driscoll]

Fitted by D.H. Kidd

Door Ironmongery
Interlock /
Ecco Hardware /

Fitted by D.H. Kidd

Furniture & Interiors
Sofa & Chair Upholstery
Yours Personally / [ask for Sandra]

"Industrial" Dining Table
Design by Andrew & Avril /
Table top by D.H. Kidd

Interclamp sourced from
iQ Group / [speak with Jan]

"Shipping Crate" Coffee Table
Designed & made by Andrew & Avril /

"Scaffolding Pole" Beds
Designed & made by Andrew & Avril /

Interclamp sourced from
iQ Group / [speak with Jan]

Other pieces/items from
RETRORUMAGE [Paul is Mr. Retrorumage, your man for unusual retro items]
Oxfam Home, Barnardos, Freecycle
Kashan Carpets & Flooring, Sandyford
Magicvision, Dún Laoghaire [ask for Hugh]
Boconcept, Sandyford
Click for Blinds
Etsy, MADE, habitat, IKEA

Avril & Andrew's DIY creations primarily sourced timber and materials from
Homevalue Hardware, Dún Laoghaire /
[Great deals on hardware & timber cut to measure]

Roof Garden

Design and planting by Avril & Hazel /

Plants & pots from
Windyridge, Dún Laoghaire /
Hobart & Mays, Monkstown /
The Outdoor Scene, Goatstown /


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