Forming part of a larger farm complex the Old Court House, which had been derelict for 30 years, looked beyond saving. Home to 3 species of bats, great crested newts, nesting birds, slow worms and a badgers set, it kisses the edge of the Teme floodplain and borders several SSSI’s. In 2013 it was more ecosystem than building. With no vehicle access the building had survived 400 years without major change, but was teetering on the edge of existence, a gale away from loss.
For decades the building had been considered both a liability and an enigma and was the source of considerable speculation. Although listed, and clearly impressive, very little was known of the building which was absent from maps or census returns. On its purchase along with 20 other buildings, all in a dire state, a section 106 agreement was prepared to safeguard, record & repair the building alongside the development of the rest of the site.
Working with the client, the contractor, conservation officers & HMRC a five year development plan for the estate buildings was prepared bookended by works to the Old Court House. It was clear from the outset that the works would have to be staged, highly considered and would be specialist and probably costly.