We were recently involved in a project that had some similarities with Sarah Beeny's Rise Hall restoration, in terms of dealing with "the Authorities". In particular, Building Control.
I have been rather scathing about the "Beeny's Restoration Nightmare" TV programmes themselves, due to the unnecessary 'dramas' and lack of useful detail on the restoration process itself, however by-and-large I think what Sarah (& Graham) have achieved with the building is very good indeed. I would also point out that, as far as I have been able to decipher, there were never any issues with the Conservation Department (who were on-board with the project at a very early stage - and remember, simple 'repairs' do not require formal listed building consent, although I would recommend at least discussing any proposed work with your local Conservation Officer). The problems have revolved around the planning COU (change of use) issue and the subsequent Building Control "requirements" that kick in with some COU's. The 'retrospective' method of dealing with these issues really didn't help either.
Read all about what needs Building Regs approval here... http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2010/2214/part/2/made
We got called in quite late on this project in south-west London. Our client was already well advanced with converting the building into a day school/nursery, but the architect had noticed a significant dip in the lobby floor near the front entrance - so we got called in to have a look. Only after we had solved the problem and works were nearly complete did we then get hit with a load of 'conditions' from Building Control to resolve retrospectively (always a pain when you're not involved from the start). I shall now try and put prior & subsequent events into a nutshell:
|Dating from c.1810, this Regency villa (Grade II) is only one of two remaining from a row of as many as 12 along this stretch of road. You can see its rather ugly new neighbour on the right, as well as the modern extensions to the left.|
|The existing floor joists under the front lobby. Not really clear from this photo, but worst-case deflection measured at 100mm on a 3.5m (12ft) span.|
|The surviving original cantilever timber staircase. Had sagged a bit, but was still perfectly sound (having passed my 'bounce' test with flying colours.) Sorry no photo of the second balustrade, not been back to site to see it finished.|
|However hard you try, things still slip through the net. Me: "I hope that's a lime render" - Chap: "Well, its got some lime in it" #FacePalm|