Personal attachment to this former prep-school was the driving force behind the client’s wish to see this dilapidated building brought back to life. A substantial Grade II Listed property, requiring full remodelling and part demolition, the project was a labour of love requiring a great deal of faith from all concerned. Originally a Rectory and latterly a prep school, it was largely guess work as to what would be revealed once the project began. The numerous renovations over the years had covered up its credentials as a fine historic building and years of ‘making do’ and ‘papering over the cracks’ had taken their toll.
Planning and listed building consent was achieved relatively easily and the first step was to strip back the existing fabric to reveal the ‘forest’ of timbers and original reeded windows. This resulted in the timber frame being supported off scaffolding as the foundations were excavated and stabilised. The historic building advisor recorded meticulously each process for resubmission. Together with engineers, consultants and contractors, we worked hard to painstakingly assess the existing framework and remove or repair large sections to create a structurally sound building from which to begin the changes for the proposed layout.
As many features as possible were retained to enable the original building to shine through. The removal of the large later addition to the rear enabled a new extension to be constructed which included a basement with a light-well for a cinema room, family kitchen at ground level and master suite above.
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