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Country Homes

These projects represent significant challenges, often with owners wishing to remain in occupancy throughout the works. An understanding of services and how they can be incorporated into significant listed buildings is a challenge and requires, a depth of appreciation of modern technologies and the impact of installation on important historic fabric.

 

Often there is a requirement beyond traditional mechanical and electrical installation, with broadband, mobile boosters, CCTV, Wi-Fi, fire and intruder alarms systems. Heating systems incorporating ground source heat pumps, air source heat pumps, biomass boilers and solar power become important aspects of the projects.

As ever marrying together suitable traditional and appropriate modern breathable materials and systems, to provide, comfort and complement the building are important. Plus an eye for detail when it comes to finishes and final installation of sanitary ware are significant in ensuring client satisfaction.

"Appreciation of our clients privacy is of the utmost importance to us. We have many successful projects that feature on our reference list, but many more that don't!"
 
A masterpiece of the Arts and Crafts movement. Goddards was built by Edwin Lutyens
Gorhambury House commissioned by, the 3rd Viscount Grimston constructed by Sir Roert Taylor. Neo-Palladian

Goddards

Gorhambury House

Goddards is one of a number of Edward Lutyens' designed country houses Owlsworth Conservation have been heavily involved with. Our experience working on Lutyens' arts and crafts projects is extensive and we pride ourselves on understanding the traditional building techniques and ethos of this celebrated architect.

Goddards involved careful render conservation, brickwork repairs and decoration. Other Lutyens' projects have been all encompassing, bringing properties back from years of lying unused and derelict adding new services, a change of use and new finishes throughout to restore an outstanding dwelling. Associated with this has been the careful conservation of the Gertrude Jekyll gardens within the grounds, which involved extremely large scale hard landscaping and restoration of a series decorative garden features and fountains.

Contact us for a full project list and references

 

Whilst the remains of Old Gorhambury House can still be seen today they have long since fallen into disrepair. Consequently, the current Gorhambury House was commissioned by James Grimston, the 3rd Viscount Grimston and constructed in the years 1777-84 by Sir Robert Taylor. The large and imposing Palladian style Grade II* property has been occupied by the Grimston family since its construction.

​Spanning a period of approximately five years and divided into 3 phases Gorhambury has represented one of Owslworths’ largest and most challenging projects to date.  Sensitive repairs required using most of the traditional trades we employ in house, decorative lime plasterers, joiners, brick workers, stonemasons, carpenters and blacksmiths but also drawing upon our network of specialist subcontractors, encompassing everything from groundwork, structural repairs, to new lead and slate roofs and everything in between. All the existing services have been stripped out and renewed to the highest standards in a unique configuration concealed within a purpose-built labyrinth of below ground service ducts. A custom control system was developed for the service installation and beyond, which incorporates specialist lighting, sound, daylight control, security and fire detection.

The challenges presented were beyond those normally encountered from a construction perspective, as our very understanding client remained living in-situ and the site continued excepting visitors from the public. Therefore, each step of the construction programme had to be carefully planned in terms of not only construction, but additional consideration relating to fire compartmentation, safe access and site security.

Woburn Abbey

Woburn Abbey Grade I

Woburn Abbey, the principal residence of the Russell family for 400 years, has been undergoing extensive renovation since 2019. What initially began as a project to rebuild the Screen Walls to the East of the Abbey and refurbish the visitor route expanded to address underlying structural issues discovered within the building. The renovation aims to safeguard the Abbey and its heritage for many years to come.

 

Owlsworth has been very involved with the project employing heritage craft skills to reinstate many rooms to their original schemes.  We have also installed a new M&E and fire suppressant misting system, undertaking extensive joinery and façade repairs, wide-ranging decorative plastering, and decorations. 

 

Due to the age of the building, unforeseen issues have arisen most significantly with the poor condition of the roof structure, leading to the monumental task of reroofing the entire Abbey.

 

Work is also underway in the gardens. A new visitor arrival building is being constructed and will be surrounded by a new guest entrance garden.

The restoration efforts promise remarkable results, and we look forward to seeing these when the Abbey reopens to visitors.

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