ACHIEVING THE CLIENT’S REQUIREMENTS
Broadlands is an English country house in the Palladian style, situated near the town of Romsey, which is the home of Lady Brabourne. Recently, the heating, and hot and cold water pipework was all replaced, together with the power, lighting, telephone and data cabling. Graham was the client project manager, working closely with the Director of Estates, Richard Jordan-Baker.
To achieve success, it is vital to understand what the client wants and to be able to convey these wishes to the design team and the contractor. It is equally important for the client to appreciate what the team is proposing to do. Too often, clients will view a finished project and say that they did not realise that it would be as it is.
At Broadlands, Graham came up with an ingenious idea. Before instructing the team to prepare their drawings and details, he obtained a number of cardboard cut-outs of switches and socket outlets which were then stuck to the walls in their proposed locations, including their height. Lady Brabourne made some minor amendments to suit the way each room would be used and, after receiving her approval, Graham directed the team to press on with their drawings, using the approved layouts as the basis.
As a result of his creativity, the project was undertaken efficiently and to the great satisfaction of the client.
THE QUADRANGLE FACADE
Buckingham Palace was largely designed by John Nash in the 1820s, but the East wing was added in 1847 to the designs of Sir Edmund Blore. Built using Caen stone from Normandy, the façade was painted after just five years as it began to deteriorate. In 1913, the elevation facing The Mall was re-faced using Portland stone, but the Quadrangle elevation remained painted until 2007.
As a director of the Property Section in the Royal Household, Graham Sharpe instigated the permanent repair of the Quadrangle elevation. He set a strategy that involved initial investigations and trials; the completion of a sample area to assess the likely scope; and the phased repair of the whole façade. The work involved the removal of very thick layers of paint using poultices; cutting out and replacement of defective stone and previous cementitious ‘repairs’; creation of new decorative, carved stone; overhaul of windows and doors; and protection of the ‘sky’ surfaces with cast lead to prevent further deterioration.
Leading and directing the team of specialist consultants, skilled masons, conservators, leadworkers, and other specialists, Graham ensured that the highest standards were achieved. Although the work was disruptive, the wing remained occupied throughout, so he initiated regular tours of the scaffolding to win the support of those working behind the façade, who could then appreciate the extent and quality of the work.
- 2011 RICS Awards London Region Runner up in the ‘Conservation’ category
- 2011 RICS Awards London Region Runner up in the ‘Overall’ category
- 2010 Georgian Group Winner of the ‘Restoration of a Georgian Building in an Urban Setting’ category
- 2012 Stone Federation Winner of the Natural Stone Awards in the ‘Repair and Restoration’ category