Examples of Communion’s work were used by Sinclair Johnston of Sinclair Johnston & Partners, leading structural engineering consultants, at RIBA on 27 November 2015 at a seminar on permitted changes of use.
The seminar, which was called Permitted changes of use: current issues in practice, looked at recent changes to planning law that strengthen permitted development rights. The aim was to look at some of the tricky areas and bring delegates up to speed with the Government’s latest policy and practice so that they can continue to advise and plan with confidence.
There have been a number of decisions made recently about barn conversions that are starting to inform the law in this area. The key question appears to be simply, can the structure be converted?
Taking this as a starting point, Sinclair’s talk, Partial demolition and structural alterations: how far can you go?, considered the question of when a reasonable alteration becomes a repair and proposed that the contentious nature of the legislation means that applications need to be thoroughly thought through and fully supported. He illustrated his points using examples from current and recent conversion and change of use projects that he has worked on with Communion and David Keyte, independent planning consultant.
We work regularly with Sinclair and he has been an important part of our team on some of our most renowned projects including the creation of rural business premises, the extension for a timber-framed family home, St Peter’s Church, Hereford, the conservation and renovation of a 14th century Grade II listed longhouse and the conservation of a 17th century barn. We were delighted he used examples from our work with him and David Keyte, the planning consultant who we work with on all sensitive planning cases.