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Refurbishment of a listed Georgian apartment in Clifton, Bristol

This project was undertaken by develeco, archipeleco’s sister company, which was set up by Paul and Lucy to develop property in the Bristol area using green building practices. The property had been vacant for 10 years and the elements had taken their toll. Mushrooms were growing out of the walls due to the damp and the floor of the back extension was so rotten that it collapsed underfoot. Yet the potential of the property shone through. It formed part of a fine Georgian town house with graciously proportioned rooms in a very desirable part of Bristol. Significantly, the apartment sat above a series of old brick vaults that could be incorporated into the dwelling, provided they could be properly waterproofed and only if the design would be accepted by the Conservation Officer.

develeco formed a constructive relationship with the Conservation Officer and after a round of revisions to the design, secured listed building consent for a dramatic set of alterations that would transform the dwelling. As the property was on the lower ground floor, the challenge was to get daylight into the dwelling. Luckily, the site sloped dramatically so that the back of the building was fully above ground level and so there was potential for light and views on that side.

Two new light wells were created to bring daylight into the basement. An oversized roof light was added to the kitchen to capture the morning light and new window openings were added to the back of property to take advantage of all the natural light on offer. The kitchen was increased in size, two additional bedrooms added, a new stair constructed down to the lower floor, a new family bathroom, an en-suite shower room and a utility room were added, all while respecting the historic building fabric. Comprehensive systems of waterproofing and internal wall insulation were installed to ensure the property would remain warm and dry. develeco managed to successfully negotiate with the Conservation Officer for the use of double glazing for all the new windows. This is rarely permitted in listed buildings and had not been granted to other refurbishment schemes in this particular terrace of houses. The result was a new lease of life for a listed dwelling that will be comfortable and energy efficient while keeping all the charm and grace of the original dwelling. The dwelling was sold soon after completion.