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historical buildings

Building Safety Act 2022

Higher Risk Buildings

As we edge past the six-month transition period for Higher Risk Buildings (HRBs), a recent study by NBS sheds light on a significant industry challenge. It reveals that half of the professionals are still in the dark about their responsibilities under the Building Safety Act 2022. This lack of clarity poses a considerable risk to the industry’s ability to adapt and comply with new regulations.

A Call for Better Understanding

The findings are a wake-up call. Only a fifth of those surveyed feel ‘very clear’ on their duties concerning Higher Risk Buildings (HRBs). Such uncertainty underlines the urgent need for enhanced awareness and education. Russell Haworth, CEO of Byggfakta Group, echoes this sentiment. He recalls Dame Judith Hackitt’s firm message on the inevitability of regulatory change. The industry must grasp the intricacies of the Building Safety Act to uplift building safety standards.

The Golden Thread of Building Information

Another pressing issue is the management of the Golden Thread of Information. Less than half of the respondents understand how to maintain essential safety-related building information. A mere 10% have a concrete strategy in place. This gap in understanding and planning is alarming. Dr Stephen Hamil stresses the importance of a continuous, accessible flow of information to uphold safety throughout a building’s lifecycle.

The Role of Robust Specifications

Specifications play a pivotal role in ensuring safety from the design phase. They are crucial for demonstrating compliance with Building Regulations. The Building Safety Act, as Hamil points out, offers a chance for the industry to assert control over design and construction processes. Effective specification writing is fundamental to preventing substandard construction.

Moving Forward with Consistency

If you require assistance with your respective duties contact John Burke Associates today. We provide expertise and support to ensure clients comply with their statutory obligations. Furthermore, we believe in delivering a collaborative service and ultimately gaining the client’s trust and commitment. Therefore, our clerks of works division undertake a systematic and vigilant inspection of construction works in progress. This includes workmanship, materials and compliance to standards.

Preserving England’s Heritage: A Glimpse into the Heritage at Risk Register

Historic Buildings

Historic England’s Annual Report Reveals 159 New Additions

Every year, Historic England releases its Heritage at Risk Register. This is a comprehensive assessment of the state of England’s historic buildings and sites. In the latest update, 159 new additions grace the register, highlighting structures at risk of neglect, decay, or inappropriate development.

Unravelling History: Holbeche House in the West Midlands

Among the newly added sites is Holbeche House in the West Midlands, where the infamous Gunpowder Plot unfolded. This historical gem now faces the threat of neglect, urging preservation efforts to safeguard its rich past.

Dickensian Inspiration: Great White Horse Hotel in Suffolk

Another notable inclusion is the Great White Horse Hotel in Suffolk, inspiring Charles Dickens’ inaugural novel, The Pickwick Papers. The peril of neglect looms over this iconic building, emphasising the urgent need for conservation measures.

Rescued Gems: 203 Sites Saved and Removed

While the register expands, it’s crucial to acknowledge the success stories. This year witnessed the removal of 203 historic sites from the register, signifying successful rescue missions and secured futures for these cultural treasures.

Current Landscape: 4,871 Entries in 2023

The Heritage at Risk Register for 2023 features a total of 4,871 entries, a reduction of 48 compared to the previous year. Despite the challenges, the commitment to preserving historic buildings remains steadfast.

Duncan Wilson’s Perspective

Reflecting on the report, Historic England’s chief executive, Duncan Wilson, emphasizes the program’s role in drawing attention to sites in dire need. Wilson states, “The Heritage at Risk program shines a light on our historic sites most in need and can help to attract funding and help.”

Celebrating a quarter-century milestone, Wilson expresses pride in the register’s impact, showcasing the successful preservation of numerous places. The ongoing commitment involves engaging local communities in the care and enjoyment of their heritage, ensuring a collective effort to safeguard England’s historical legacy.


Preserving Historical Buildings

historical buildings

Here at John Burke Associates we have had the pleasure of working on some of the most exquisite architecture. From innovative modern designs to sublime historical buildings, each project enjoyable through its individual merit. For example, state of the art technology used in modern construction is constantly evolving, giving developers innovative ways to build. Thus, providing project managers such as ourselves new and exciting methodologies and process models. However, there is something about historical architecture, which is thought provoking, when one considers architecture before technology.

Why is Historical Building Preservation Important?

In addition to the law, there is an abundance of reasons to support the preservation of historical buildings and architecture. Whilst the covenants of working on a listed building is often more complicated, the reward is also much higher. Here are a few reasons we believe preserving history is also beneficial.

Intrinsic Value

Many historic buildings play a bigger role in our communities than you may imagine. The grand designs and intricate details of older buildings created by materials such as rare hardwood from primary forests which no longer exist. Such buildings are often focus points for towns and cities to serve as a reminder of the area’s history.

Environmental Considerations

In an era where net zero is at the forefront of the construction industries priorities, refurbishment is a positive step. Regenerating old buildings to give them a new lease of life saves energy resources spent on building materials, equipment, transportation, and tools. Therefore, reducing the harms of construction waste while preserving historical beauty.

Educational & Cultural Aspect

As mentioned earlier, when looking at an older building, one can’t help but appreciate the beauty created without advanced technology. These buildings are evidence of the work our forefathers and ancestors put into making our towns and cities beautiful. Restoring and preserving historical buildings and landmarks enriches the cultural values of those residing nearby. Consequently, unifying goals towards a better future whilst preserving the fundamental history of construction.

Work with an Award-Winning Team

John Burke Associates provide a comprehensive portfolio of services to our clients. Our award-winning team have worked on a variety of projects pertaining listed buildings. Most recently, father and son team David and Dale Hayward received the prestigious Peter Wilson Award 2022. This was given for their work on the grade 1 listed Indigo Hotel in Bath a large and complex project. Click here to find out more.