We at HBC&R believe that good conservation should be based upon a respect for the existing fabric. Through making the least possible intervention we maintain the majority of the cultural, heritage value. The use of reversible processes allows us to create the widest options for future development or any future, unseen issues.
We feel that the building should be able to tell its story, this means replacement parts need to be visible, so as not to falsify its artistic or historic legacy. New work needn't be radically different, but rather maintain harmony while allowing the new work and the building to remain honest.
We feel it is important to diagnose the problems that have caused the deterioration of the building through a structural assessment and or condition report. For the most part, problems with historic buildings, and in particular, timber framed buildings, can be traced to decay due to the ingress of water or failure due to ill-judged alterations or interventions. These must be addressed before or at the same time as the repairs are carried out, as unless these are resolved the problem will continue, even after repair.
We feel it is important not only to deal with each individual problem but to take a holistic approach to the building, not only in assessing the problems, but also when considering the remedies, for example; a timber member in need of repair, may be repaired using a suitable in-situ method if it is the only repair required, or, it may be dismantled and repaired using a different technique if the whole frame needs repairing.
Importantly no attempt should be made to conceal repair work, but it should harmonise with the original fabric.