Originally built in 1860, Brooklands mansion was remodelled in 1890 by the renowned architect, Reginald Bloomfield. The home of the Locke-King family, who built the world-famous Brooklands motor racing circuit, the first of its kind in the world, the house was converted to hospital use during World War I, and then as a technical college following WWII. As part of an extensive redevelopment of the site the mansion is to be returned to residential use, converted into 16 luxury apartments. Rears Architects have been responsible for both the design of the proposed conversion works alongside the conservation of the original building fabric, reversing unsympathetic alterations whilst uncovering, and in some cases reinstating lost elements of important historic fabric. This will restore the building back to its former glory after many years of neglect.
We undertook an extensive on-site survey to catalogue spaces and surviving historic features, alongside documentary research which revealed the original plan form. These led to the preparation of significance plans which informed the design of the conversion, highlighting areas here important fabric and features were to be preserved, and other later interventions where beneficial changes could be made. Particular challenges included:
- Subdivision of the building, respecting the original plan form, features and configuration of spaces, whilst achieving the required amount of accommodation to maintain viability for the developer.
- Conforming to modern building regulations for the change of use, incorporating measures to achieve fire safety and sound insulation whilst uncovering and exposing important historic features, retaining the character and integrity of the building and increasing the desirability of the apartments.
- Incorporation of services seamlessly to achieve modern expectations, whilst enacting minimum impact on the historic fabric.
- Incorporation of sustainable and renewable technologies to minimise energy consumption and running costs for occupants whilst maintaining the appearance and character of the building