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Sergison Cottage


Stuart Birrell FRICS was appointed to deal with complex party wall matters relating to the demolition of an existing building in Blackheath, London SE3, and the provision of a new modern building in its place complete with basement. The project was complicated due to the existence of a 15 metre retaining wall adjacent to a school, with the attendant health and safety issues.

A number of schemes had been proposed on the site since 2011, with the local Lewisham Council planners objecting to all of them. Sketch Architects was appointed in early 2013, and planning permission was eventually achieved in August 2015. However, how the work could be carried out was still being discussed at planning meetings held in 2017.

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The new construction was a two storey, four-bedroom house that included a full basement storey, with skylights set into the ground to the front and south eastern flank elevation. The highly sensitive site is located within the Blackheath Conservation Area, with a Grade II listed building on one side and a school, situated at a lower level, on the other.

Proximity to the school had implications for when excavation work for the basement could be carried out - only outside of school terms times. Further requirements included dust mitigation, vehicle wheel washing, and an acoustic barrier had to be attached to the hoarding adjacent to the school. The timing of noisy activities had to avoid school lunch and break times, where possible, when the children were outside.

Since it last sold in September 2011 for £1,250,000, the property’s value has increased by an estimated £824,000.


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