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Rescue and sustainable upgrading of a Grade II listed Cottage, London, finalist for the ASBP Awards 2019

The ASBP awards recognise construction projects which exemplify excellence in sustainability through their products, design and delivery. The finalists can be viewed on their website here.

This project is the conservation of a fine grade II listed cottage in the heart of Hampstead. It was a journey through history, unexpected findings and imaginative design. The repairs were carried out on site by skilful joiners using high quality timber, with sensitive bespoke detailing and pragmatic considerations. Sustainable timber and like-for-like materials were sourced for reinstatements and new elements. Although the listing allows more flexibility towards the rigorous building control standards, we aimed for a higher level of sustainable fabric upgrading. It was a successful project for our clients and we hope it will act as guidance for conservation retrofit projects in the future. The project is described in detail on our website here.

Judges comments

The judges were particularly impressed with the concern for minimising the amount of additional embodied carbon added to the building fabric during refurbishment. Many of the existing materials were in fact older reclaimed construction materials dating back centuries, some far more durable than modern alternatives.

The project team went to great extents to preserve the existing fabric by carefully repairing existing internal timber panelling and external weatherboarding, and replacing incompatible recent refurbishment materials with appropriate, low embodied carbon natural fibre products such as sheep’s wool and woodfibre.

 

Ford Maddox Brown’s Painting ‘Work’, showcasing Holly Cottage in the background

Ford Maddox Brown’s Painting ‘Work’, showcasing the cottage in the background

View from the street

View from the street

First Floor Front room before start of work

First Floor Front room before start of work

Exerpt from investigation report

Exerpt from investigation report

2nd floor during strip out

2nd floor during strip out

2nd Floor Front room after Phase I strip out

2nd Floor Front room after Phase I strip out

1st Floor Front room after Phase I strip out

1st floor front room after Phase I strip out

2nd floor panelling removed to reveal structural issues

2nd floor panelling removed to reveal structural issues

Ground floor front room, during structural repairs

Ground floor front room, during structural repairs

Upgrading insulation using natural materials

Upgrading insulation using natural materials

Panelling during repairs

Panelling during repairs

Top floor bedroom, after

Top floor bedroom, after

1st floor bedroom, after

1st floor bedroom, after

Ground floor living room, after

Ground floor living room, after

Entrance to Basement vault before

Entrance to Basement vault before

Basement-vault – discovery of an entrance arch, before and after

Basement-vault – discovery of an entrance arch, before and after

Exterior, weatherboarding removed, before and after

Exterior, weatherboarding removed, before and after

Finished cladding

Finished cladding

Garden, before. Looking towards the house

Garden, before. Looking towards the house

The finished garden, looking towards the house

The finished garden, looking towards the house