A viable new use needs to be found for the building as it is currently disused. The continuation of the existing Youth Hostel or similar use is probably the best fit for the building.
The installation of a security system might allow the intermittent use of the building / occasional use / use by prior appointment.
Maintaining a public use would be welcomed as this is an important building and with its landscape setting is a significant amenity.
The conservation / repair of the roof finishes and leadwork at this point is essential to maintain the building’s condition and prevent further deterioration.
Due to the presence of temporary repairs and the poor condition of remaining slate we would recommend re-slating the building. The existing fibre cement slate is brittle and to repair the slating as is would represent a false economy as it is likely a fuller re-slating project would need to be undertaken relatively soon. The choice of new slate will have a bearing on the cost of the works. However, in accordance with best conservation practise and given the protected structure status of the building, a natural slate will be required for recovering the roof.
Preliminary Schedule of Works:
Allow for the removal of existing roof finishes including temporary repairs (felt, battens & uPVC sheeting), existing fibre cement slates, sarking underlay and slating battens.
Allow for localised repair of roof timbers with particular attention paid to timbers in contact with masonry; wall plates, gable timbers. A timber decay specialist is to be engaged to report on existing timber condition.
Repair existing timbers on a minimum intervention basis by retaining all sound timbers and making scarfe repairs to any decayed sections of wall plate in similar sized treated timber. Allow for splice repairs to decayed rafter ends.
Re-slate using new natural slate (recommended Penryn Welsh slate 500mm x 300mm Celtic grade) over new slating battens on breathable felt membrane (Recommended Tyvek Supra)
Ensure adequate ventilation at eaves to encourage cross ventilation.
Provide new Code 4 lead soakers to be turned up 75mm under cover flashing
Provide Code 6 lead apron flashing and code 6 stepped cover flashing in 1.5m lengths allowing a lap of 100mm
Cover flashing to be turned into chase and held in place with wedges formed of lead sheet folded several times to suit the thickness of the joint. Chase to be closed up with lime mortar pointing (NHL 3.5) to conceal the wedges.
Remove existing temporary felt coverings and uPVC to existing valleys
Retain and repair as necessary existing valley boarding
Provide new Code 5 lead coverings in 1.5m lengths in accordance with traditional detail as outlined in Lead Development Association Manual
Allow for dismantling existing system and assessment of salvage value.
Allow for new heritage cast iron rainwater goods by specialist Foundry
Half round gutters: Provide 125mm (6’’) gutters
Downpipes with ears: 100mm (4”) circular downipes
Allow for all necessary associated stop ends, shoes, swan necks, and outlets.
Gutters to be mechanically fixed back to wall tops using brackets to manufacturer’s instructions
Allow for necessary falls as per manufacturer’s instructions
Caulk joints with butyl mastic sealant, prime, undercoat and paint.
The windows should be repaired on a minimum interventions basis, retaining all remaining timber and replacing broken elements. Generally scarfe repairs should be made to framing, meeting rails and glazing bars replicating the existing moulded profile. There is a consistent moulded detail used on all windows and this should be copied faithfully. Broken panes of glass should be replaced with 4mm glass on a linseed oil putty bedding and finished with putty beading.
The following general principles will apply;
Remove stop beads and parting beads and detach sash cords from weights to facilitate removal and repair of sashes.
Allow for opes to be temporarily weathered while sashes are being repaired.
Allow for putty to be softened, removed and discarded.
Existing glass to be retained and reused. Any damaged glass to be replaced with 6mm glass sized to fit.
Allow for scarfed repairs in well-seasoned pine or other appropriate timber to replace damaged or rotten sections with matching sectional thickness and moulded profiles.
Allow for existing glass to be returned to its correct location and linseed oil putty beaded.
Allow for box frames to be repaired in situ
New parting beads and stop beads to be fabricated to incl. routed draught excluders such as brush seals by Exitec or eq. approved.
Sash cords to be renewed with natural flax attached to existing weights (presumed fallen to bottom of sash boxes).
Allow for new brass pulleys where required by Carlisle Brass or eq approved. Sashes to be brought to full working order and balanced.
Allow for new brass meeting rail clasps and brass pull rings to bottom rail of lower sash and top rail of upper sash. All window ironmongery to be solid brass by Carlisle brass or eq. approved.
All work to be primed, undercoat and gloss.
EXTERNAL PLASTER REPAIRS
Allow for local repairs to blown and delaminated plaster with matching harling (wet dash) finish. Plaster to be natural hydraulic lime binder and aggregate matching existing particle size. 1 part lime (NHL 3.5) to 2 ½ parts sand/aggregate mix.