It was an early start for a Saturday but a beautiful drive, and we were greeted by balmy sunshine and rolling grasslands out in the reserve. The weather was perfect: just hot enough to appreciate the cool of the buildings and spaces!

We started with a slide presentation in the main house, which Richard Stretton used to show the overall architectural strategy and context of the reserve, as well as the building progress over stages. We were then shown around the farm and various buildings.

What really became apparent to me on the tour was the level of involvement this project took: the leaders of the projects went way beyond the norm in their involvement, “making it happen” around very limited local materials, skills and machinery available. I loved the simple concept of the lucas mill out in the field being the dictator of the majority of the timber sizes (200mm) which in turn were employed in so many ways to achieve various architectural outcomes!

A lovely home-grown lunch of fresh pies, home-made bread, leafy salad and pickles followed, joined by chatter and the odd beer clink . After lunch people slowly dribbled off back to their cities. A great day out, and too short if anything!


This tour would not have been possible without the time and efforts of Richard Stretton and Angela Shaw of Koop, as well as the folks at Dalton Private Reserve, who allowed us to share in this inspiring place. For them the KZNIA is most grateful.

If you missed out on the tour, there will be an open day at the reserve in the near future, which will provide an opportunity to take a peek at this fantastic site too. Watch this space!

*more photos on our facebook page: click here *

Dalton Private Reserve

Inside the workshop

Dalton Private Reserve

Main house

Dalton Private Reserve

in the wood kiln

A peek into the kitchen cupboards