Colbert | Listed Building

Our clients, Mr. & Mrs. Colbert, contacted Richmond Oak for a quotation to provide and build an oak conservatory on their Grade 2 Listed Georgian property in Hertfordshire.

They already had an architect’s concept agreed by Hertsmere Planning & Conservation and contracted a builder to carry out the ground-works and associated works, such as electrics, underfloor heating, plastering and floor tiling.

The Objective

Mr. & Mrs. Colbert are very busy business people with children at school and wanted to engage professionals to minimize their personal involvement in the project as much as possible. They required the services of a specialist Company that could work closely with their chosen builder, without them having to be ‘piggy in the middle’.

The objective of the project was to create a relaxing family living space with an uninterrupted view of the attractive garden. Typically, much of the garden was not readily visible from the main living rooms. It was essential that the new living space be comfortable to use all year around; not too hot in the Summer and not too cold in the Winter.

Richmond Oak - Colbert Listed Building

Winning the Project

Richmond Oak - Colbert Listed Building

We offered a unique seasoned oak product having flush conservation sashes, dummy sashes to the fixtures, and glazing bars to meet the Conservation Officers requirements.

No other Company was offering a dual colour option with a white painted exterior having empathy with the main house and a warm natural oak finish to the interior.

We also proposed changing the Architect’s hipped roof design to a gable front, having a sunburst gable to take up the features of some curved top doors and windows on the house. This change was discussed with Conservation Officer and it was agreed that this would be treated as a non-material alteration.

A design solution was provided to the difficulty of having a 1.2m radius turret in the interior corner of the proposed conservatory location, which wasn’t at 90° and between the two box gutters.

Richmond Oak provided a significantly higher glazing specification, using solar control glass well within building regulations requirements and with both heat reflection standards on a hot day, and heat retention standards on a cold day, superior to any offered by other suppliers.

The Design

On reviewing the design, which was perfectly acceptable below the roof line, the Client’s architect had specified a hipped roof with a 35° pitch, to match the house and it was also of a design that was very reminiscent of a PVC roof.

A significant change was suggested. As you may well be aware, 2D drawings do not convey the reality of what we see and 3D perspective visuals were very useful in displaying a reduction of roof pitch to 30° with a sunburst gable on the front, which was visually much more sympathetic with the house. In reality it was impossible to see the difference between the roof pitch on the house and the conservatory from ground view. (Had the house had a gable aligned with the roof of the conservatory, or closer to it, we might well have considered matching the pitch, but not in this case.)

What’s more, because we individually design each hardwood conservatory or orangery to complement the existing architecture, we are ideally placed to create an inspiring design that answers your requirements and enhances the historic value of your home.

The Installation

Our dedicated installation team carried out the build of the oak frames construction and glazing during a 3 week period and managed to deal with both the curved turret and non-square house walls, without it being evident in the final solution.

Subsequent to completion, despite being told 'No way' by the Conservation Officer during a pre-planning meeting, we obtained planning for a 100 sq.m. pool building, despite the property being Grade II in a Green Belt.

Project Designer - Paul FitzGerald (Managing Director)

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