Private House

East Sussex

The Employer’s brief was to carry out a complete restoration of this important Grade II* Listed manor house and to carry out sympathetic improvements. The building had become somewhat dilapidated over the years and initial survey work established that the roof coverings would need to be renewed, rising damp checked and the house modernised and refurbished.

At ground floor level each paving brick of the Dining Room floor was carefully numbered, lifted and re-laid on a new blown glass insulated limecrete floor to prevent rising damp. The kitchen floor in the Victorian extension was carried out in a similar way with new limestone flooring. The 15th century dais beam at the south end of the Dining Room was carefully exposed by removing the modern wall panel under and providing new oak posts which also opened up the. At second floor level the ceiling linings were removed to expose the 16th century rafters and roof structure which had been covered up. The roof coverings had to be completely renewed and this was carried out on a like for like basis employing new Aldershaw handmade clay tiling to the north and east roof slopes and re-laying of the Horsham stone roofing. Sympathetic stonework repairs were carried out externally and internally.

Improvements to the building in order to make it a comfortable residence included remodelling the south wall of the Kitchen by raising the existing window head and providing new French doors onto a new sunny terrace which was constructed in place of mid 19th century outbuildings. At first floor level, bathrooms and en-suite facilities were discreetly added including in the Victorian south wing a new Dressing Room with en-suite facilities and a new east facing window. In place of the steep and dangerous staircase running from the first floor inner hall up to the second floor attic rooms, a simple new staircase was installed designed to be subservient to the main late 17th century staircase in the main hall. As part of this work the ceiling of the inner hall was removed to give a double height space and to expose the early 18th century roof structure above.

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