Historic building consultants

The Oculus team is passionate about historic and listed buildings and about maintaining and conserving our architectural heritage for future generations to live in, stay in or simply visit and enjoy.

Compliance with building regulations is fundamental when carrying out remedial or conversion work on a historic or listed building. Oculus is uniquely qualified to provide high quality, professional building control services for historic buildings that meet the needs and aspirations of its clients whilst ensuring compliance with building regulations. Our expertise can help avoid expensive, abortive design work and ensure a smooth transition from design through to final construction on site.

Conserving historic buildings does not mean "preserving them in aspic". It means finding ways of maintaining their fine architectural features whilst making them accessible and relevant to our modern lifestyle.

Oculus provide a wealth of knowledge and experience in relation to fire and access for historic buildings

Fire safety for historic buildings

Modern fire safety regulations can present a significant challenge for owners and custodians of historic or listed buildings. Poor advice in this area can incur high costs and lead to disastrous consequences.

Oculus provides expert advice on Fire Safety for historic and listed buildings. We have a proven track record and can help with the development of fire strategies as well as carrying out risk assessments. Peter Norris in particular has extensive experience in dealing with the conflicts that arise between regulations and conservation and has published several books on the subject. He also lectures on Fire Safety and the Building Regulations at the University of Bath to graduates on the architectural degree course, to post-graduates studying the MSc Course, Conservation of Historic Buildings, the RIBA Part III course and at seminars.

Oculus are involved in:

  • Developing fire strategies having due regard for historic fabric and limiting intervention.
  • Undertaking fire risk assessments and advising on solutions where significant findings require upgrading or alteration works having due regard for historic fabric and limiting intervention.
  • Providing input for integration into Conservation Management Plans for heritage assets relating to fire safety and Building Regulations.
  • Advising on sensitive solutions to resolve significant findings from fire risk assessment by others.
  • Advising on access strategies having due regard for historic fabric and limiting intervention.
  • Providing advice on energy conservation in relation to historic buildings.
  • Assistance in resolving fire safety problems between BCBs and Fire Authorities
  • Assistance in resolving Building Regulation related problems or fabric issues

With their knowledge and understanding of historic building construction, as chartered building surveyors, Oculus are ideally suited to provide the above services on an analytical and risk-assessed basis.

CASE STUDY
Marwell Zoo

Intended to replace the existing Tropical World exhibit, the new Tropical House at Marwell Zoo aims to incorporate an Energy Centre using a sustainable energy source to power both the Tropical House, and other exhibits within the park. Animals such as sloths, monkeys and lizards will interact with visitors as they walk along a path through tropical themed environments of vegetation, waterfalls rock faces and aquariums.

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CASE STUDY
Castle Drogo - Phase 2

Oculus have been involved in the extensive works been done throughout Castle Drogo since 2013. The Grade 1 listed castle in Devon was constructed of granite and built between the years of 1911 and 1930, and designed by Edwin Lutyens. Castle Drogo was the last castle to be built in England.

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CASE STUDY
Nevill Holt Opera House

Set in the Leicestershire countryside adjacent to Nevill Holt Hall the
stable block and courtyard, previously used as a theatre with a
temporary roof has been transformed into an intimate theatre to host
Nevill Holt Opera.

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