Kate and Shane Byrne have lifted the coveted Home of the Year 2022 trophy for their 150 year old farmhouse with modern extension in Co Wicklow.
Byrne’s home captured the hearts of judges, with Hugh Wallace saying the moment he saw the property he “knew there was something special in store”.
The property has been in Shane’s family for decades and his son is the fourth generation of the Byrne family to grow up there.
When the couple moved in four years ago, they renovated the farmhouse, adding a modern extension and tearing through all the smaller spaces to create an open living area with lots of natural light.
The family admitted they love the sense of history in their home and hope that in time their son will be raising a fifth-generation Byrne there.
“We are just overjoyed and overwhelmed by the response to our home. It’s just so incredibly flattering that our farmhouse is reaching the finals, let alone winning. We never could have imagined that,” the winners Kate and Shane said.
“Our home is part of our family history and is truly a home, not just a house. It’s amazing that the judges see and recognize that. For us, a home is not about the size of your floor plan or your budget, what matters to our family is the feeling the home gives you and those who visit.
“The other houses in the competition were beautiful and it’s a great honor to have competed alongside them. Just being part of the competition is a great experience and one I highly recommend,” the couple said.
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The eighth series of Home of the Year saw three judges, Hugh Wallace, Amanda Bone and Sara Cosgrove, visit 21 homes across the country but chose Kate and Shane’s home as the final winner.
“When you walked in you knew it was something special and as I walked through the door I loved the hall. The size and scale of the kitchen was great and that large dining table was stunning,” said judge Hugh Wallace.
“It was amazing because as soon as you walked through that door you could just feel the heartbeat of this spectacular home. There’s the intangible that’s so important – that feeling as you walk through the house; the family, the fun, the history, the memories that come with that home – that’s what home is for me,” said Hugh.
Judge Amanda Bone said the views from some of the homes in the competition were “amazing” and a constant reminder of “what a beautiful country we live in”.
“Seven homes made it to the finals, but there were many more homes that really deserved to be there. The winning house is a traditional 19th-century farmhouse that has been renovated and extended. This home is light, spacious, comfortable, uplifting and has a great connection with the surrounding countryside. Sometimes homes are all about how you feel in them, and our winner just made you feel good,” said Amanda.
Judge Sara Cosgrove said the Byrne home was a “worthy winner” with “a wonderful river and a beautiful combination of old and new”.
“I particularly liked the living areas, the unique U-shaped layout and the seamless connection to the outdoor patio and farm beyond. The bedrooms also had a very calm vibe, with the baby room in particular having a happy and uplifting feel to it,” said Sara.
The other six finalists were: Tony and Imogen McManus, who presented a new build in Kerry; Michelle and Rob McNeil with a renovated 1920s house in Belfast; Aoife and Gareth Tolerton presented a modernist, upside-down new building in Down; Martin and Saoirse O’Dwyer showed a renovated 1870s cottage in Sligo with barrel roof extension; Sarah Duggan and Ian McNamee entered a renovated redbrick building in Dublin, while Sinead Murphy introduced a stylish sheltered-fronted townhouse in Cork.
https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/television/tv-news/home-of-the-year-inside-the-byrne-familys-wicklow-farmhouse-that-has-just-been-crowned-this-years-winner-41524059.html House of the Year: in the Byrne family’s Wicklow farmhouse, which has just been crowned this year’s winner