Highlands Cottage is an agricultural dwelling on land at Highlands Farm, within the Pilsdon Parish north of Bridport, Dorset. Its provision is for the purpose of maintaining and managing the existing farm. The dwelling has been designed sensitively in keeping with the local vernacular and maintaining the architectural grain that defines the local context. The farm is located in a rural setting and is within a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty as well as being in close proximity to a Pilsdon Pen hillfort which is a scheduled Ancient Monument. The cottage has been built at a lower position than the farm buildings, partly screened with trees and hedgerows, and this ensures that impact on the rural environment has been kept to a minimum. The dwelling is, nevertheless, close enough to the existing farm building complex to appear an integral part of the farm.
The design evolved following careful study of the local vernacular and through an appraisal of previously approved agricultural dwellings in the vicinity. Key factors that informed the design included ensuring that it would conform to the local scale and site context.
The cottage has been constructed with natural Sherborne stone walls with dressed stone window/door surrounds and gable copings. The chimney is also natural stone with dressed stone features at high level, and the roof is slate and includes a small flat roof area to the kitchen.
As ever, sustainability and energy efficiency were driving factors for the scheme. Objectives such as reducing and offsetting water consumption, use of water conservation measures, utilising natural daylight to reduce the energy use of the building, and achieving Code for Sustainable Homes Level 4 were all achieved.