One of the services I recommend my clients tap into is a Heritage Analysis of their house. It’s enormously valuable to know if a certain part of your house pre-dates the rest, perhaps remaining from a previous dwelling, or if alterations have been made along the way. Here Derek Latham, of Lathams Architects tells us more – not only my father but also one of the most highly respected conservation architects in the UK (I’m very proud and love working with him and his talented practice of Architects) ….
“To enjoy the use of any property to the full it is best to understand its history. The people who had the vision to commission it, the erudition to design it, the skill to build it, the opportunity to live, work or play in it – their successes and failures –the alterations and extensions, modernisations and adopted fashions. If you can appreciate where a building has ‘come from’, you can better understand where it might be able to ‘go to’.
Rather than guess what might be original and of importance, an analysis of the heritage of your building could help to inform you.
Dusting down the archives and researching the history of the property and comparing this with the buildings historic character can illustrate how the building, and, where appropriate, its landscape, can tell the stories of its own past.
In turn this informs the potential for current and future changes, improvements and modernisation, without prejudicing the genuine historic parts of the property, implementing changes in empathy with its existing character, compatible with existing materials and in a manner which could be removed by a later generation without having damaged the original fabric.
The compilation of a Statement of Significance – stating all that is important about the history of the building – that sets out the findings for future owners and occupiers, followed by a Management Plan for the property (and a master plan if major alterations and extensions are proposed) can ensure money is spent to the greatest effect”