Detailed inspections can be undertaken to establish the cause, or causes, of a specific defect such as leaks, dampness, cracking, timber decay or deterioration of stone and brickwork, before identifying cost-effective remedies. When inspecting defects in traditional buildings it is important to understand how traditional buildings and materials age and deteriorate over time. In many cases, apparent defects are the simple outcome of weathering, or are historic, have stabilised, and may therefore be of no concern.
All too often defects in traditional buildings arise as a result of past repairs and interventions using inappropriate materials where the specific characteristics of traditional building construction were not understood. Therefore it is imperative that the surveyor fully understands such characteristics in order to avoid repeating such mistakes.
An AHIA is commonly required as part of a planning application for works to a protected structure or a building within an architectural conservation area.
Preparation of an AHIA involves the completion of a historic building appraisal, which presents the architectural history and development of a building, an assessment is then made of the building fabric and architectural features before establishing the significance of a subject building.
The proposed development works and interventions are reviewed and guidance is provided on the mitigation of adverse interventions. A final assessment is then prepared of the impact of proposed works on the significance of the subject building.
A conservation plan is a detailed study, which can incorporate inputs from a range of specialists such as archaeologists, landscape consultants, architectural historians, engineers, wildlife experts, etc.
It seeks to establish the significance of a building, building complex or site, identifies issues which are having, or have the potential to have, a negative impact on this significance and finally sets out a range of policies which aim to protect, maintain and enhance the significance of a place.
We can act as a lead consultant, liaising with and briefing specialist consultants, or can act as a team member advising on building condition, as well as undertaking architectural analysis and documentary research.