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Experts in building control
passionate about buildings

Oculus is an expert team of highly knowledgeable Approved Inspectors for Building Control and consultants for Fire Safety for properties located throughout England and Wales.

Leaders in their field, they are advocates of early consultation, a pioneering approach that allows them to gain compliance with the concepts and requirements embodied in the building regulations, throughout the entire design and construction process. This both mitigates the risk of additional expensive design and construction costs and enables clients to maintain the integrity of their architectural vision.

Although their expertise spans the full range of architectural styles and building types, they do have a particular passion for historic buildings. Their specialist knowledge in this area enables them to analyse and advise on the most cost-effective, least intrusive ways of fulfilling the requirements of building regulations for accessibility and fire safety, whilst maintaining and protecting the fabric of the historic building itself.

Finding an innovative solution for fire safety can save budget, the architects vision and, most importantly, lives

Experience and Expertise

  • a wealth of experience in establishing principles on important matters such as fire strategy and fire engineering approaches to fire safety
  • site inspections during construction at a frequency to suit the complexity of the construction programme
  • access to a site inspection personnel network across England and Wales following our acquisition by Assent
  • knowledgeable and consistent interpretation of the Building Regulations and allied legislation


Excellent Customer Service

  • competitive fees
  • a single point of contact for the building control service regardless of the location of a project
  • the option of operating as an integrated member of the Design Team to ensure a smooth transition from design to construction on site
  • a quality management system that enables staff to respond quickly and efficiently to our clients' needs
  • a flexible and non-bureaucratic approach of the privatised building control system

Efficient and Economical Process

  • early consultation on projects to avoid expensive, abortive design work and delays in the design process
  • a building control service that meets the needs of the project and ensures a smooth route to compliance
  • operation of the approval process on a programme of staged approvals as design information becomes available
  • the opportunity to resolve any problems at the earliest possible stage in the process thus avoiding potential conflict
  • experience and expertise in applying the Building Regulations to historic buildings

CASE STUDY
Island Pavilion, Wormsley Estate

As the name suggests, the Island Pavilion is located on an island within the magnificent Wormsley Estate. The jewel-like building, clad with glass and metal, sits serenely in the historic landscape.  The private dining facilities within are used during the summer opera season for Garsington Opera who have a magnificent performance pavilion on the Wormsley Estate. To the design of architects Robin Snell and Partners, the attention to detail in all aspects of design and construction makes this building a modern addition to the estate. The Pavilion is designed to fit seamlessly with the topography of the island and take maximum advantage of the panoramic views across the lake.

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CASE STUDY
The Gainsborough Bath Spa

The Gainsborough building situated in the heart of Bath was formerly part of the City of Bath College. A Grade II listed building from the Georgian period designed by John Pinch the Elder. The conversion to a 5* luxury hotel presented many challenges. The new multi-storey Lower Borough Walls wing reflects the host building architecturally. In the heart of the hotel lies Spa Village Bath, which is quite unique insofar as it has access to the natural thermal mineral-rich waters, making it the only natural thermal spa inside a hotel in the UK.

The main stair protection was particularly challenging as enclosing it was not an option from a conservation perspective. A solution of discreetly placed fire curtains operating on the fire alarm system to provide protection was developed. There are also isolated areas with sprinkler protection to provide an alternative to passive fire protection.

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CASE STUDY
Wessex Water, Bath

The client, Bennetts Associates Architects and Buro Happold Consulting Engineers created the most energy efficient and sustainable building in the country with the highest BREEAM rating at that time for a commercial office building. In environmental terms the project was acclaimed by the Building Research Establishment as the ‘greenest’ commercial building in the UK. It stands as an exemplary example of energy efficiency, low embodied energy, recycling including aggregate for the concrete structure and recycled storm and grey water and enhanced biodiversity. 

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