Keeping you informed

We strive to keep abreast of all the very latest property news, both locally and nationally, whether it is interpreting the revised national planning policy framework to working on homes within the new South Downs National Park.
In addition, we have a number of exciting new projects currently ongoing and buildings that we have recently been engaged on.

Find us on Facebook and Linkedin and keep up-to-date with all the very latest news or see below for a summary of recent updates and links.


Swiss Schloss | International Project

Swiss Schloss | International Project

Chilcroft is presently engaged in the renovation of this grand 19th Century Schloss at Spiez, in the canton of Bern, for a prominent International buyer. The former hotel is being transformed into a luxury private residence complete with 14 suite bedrooms and 8 reception rooms. Situated at the foot of Lake Thun, the Schloss was built in 1834 for the eminent aristocratic family, the Counts of Panzutti. The castle is a Swiss heritage site of national significance and a famous local landmark. We are delighted to have been appointed to advise on its renovation.

The project is scheduled for completion by the turn of the year.

Gainsborough Lodge | New House

Gainsborough Lodge | New House

Chilcroft have successfully obtained planning permission for a new Edwardian style property at Hindhead, Surrey, on behalf of one of our clients. The design was praised for its period architecture and use of skilled landscape techniques.

If you have a piece of land with potential, Chilcroft have an enviable reputation for designing traditional homes in historic environments. Contact us to learn how we could assist you.

Surrey Suburbs | Heritage Counts

Surrey Suburbs | Heritage Counts

Chilcroft has been brought in to advise on heritage matters concerning the Grade II listed Manor House at Puttenham, Surrey.

Proposals for a new entrance and driveway to the residence aim to address road safety concerns and create a new access in keeping with the 19th Century property.

Highclere | Heading to Downton

Highclere | Heading to Downton

Following earlier work in 2012, Chilcroft have been brought in to advise on conservation matters in the wake of filming for the forthcoming Season 4 of Downton Abbey.

The Grade I listed parkland has to be adapted for filming during specific periods each year, at considerable disruption to the estates operation. We are currently reviewing ways in which this can be achieved on a more sustainable basis, with due consideration to the heritage asset.

Poundbury | The Royal Approval

Poundbury | The Royal Approval

The brainchild of HRH The Prince of Wales, Poundbury is the model English town where you will see only the choicest architecture. The hamlet in Dorset continues to command strong demand in the housing market, with prices well above average for the South-West. The Georgian Group, of which we are a Corporate Member, is a strong advocate of the project and shares close ties with Prince Charles who also acts as Patron.

With quality traditional architecture always in demand, Chilcroft are delighted to have secured planning for Merton House, an extensive 4 bedroom property on the outskirts of the town overlooking open fields to the countryside beyond. The townhouse comprises 3 reception rooms, a double garage and secluded garden.

Saint Hill Manor | Expert Advice

Saint Hill Manor | Expert Advice

Chilcroft has been appointed as the retained Heritage Advisor to the Saint Hill Manor estate, West Sussex. Comprising more than 59 acres, the 18th Century property is one of the most complete country houses still in private ownership, and is internationally recognised as the home of the Church of Scientology.

The Historic Houses Association, of which we are Corporate Members, will be holding their annual AGM at Saint Hill Manor in August. We hope to see fellow members there.

Season's Greetings

Season's Greetings | Chilcroft

On behalf of everyone at Chilcroft, we would like to wish all our customers, associates and friends a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

We look forward to seeing you again in 2013.

Playford Hall

Caring for stone roofs | A Guide

Stone roofs are traditional in many parts of the UK and can last for hundreds of years as long as they're properly maintained.

Whether laying a new stone roof or reroofing an old, leaking roof, it's better to understand some key issues at the beginning to avoid expensive problems later on. Get it right and a stone roof will easily last 100 years and could even last 200 - 300 years.

Wherever possible, new stone slates rather than second-hand ones should be used. This helps to keep stone tile quarries open and reduces the pressure of theft on our existing stone roof stocks. If you are using second hand slates check where they've come from; it's illegal to use salvaged tiles from another listed building.

Having sourced your stone tiles what next? Find a roofer - but beware, not all roofers can lay traditional stone roofs.

For instance, natural stone roof tiles should be dressed to size, not sawn, an angle grinder shouldn't be used to cut them. Experienced stone roofers will ‘dress' a slate with a chisel edge hammer or similar tool and will understand that if a stone tile is damaged, it may still be dressed to a smaller size and reused further up a roof where the battens are laid closer together, which makes it an extremely sustainable roof material.

Look carefully at a stone roof and you'll notice that there's a real art to how it's been laid. The lower stone tiles are much larger than those further up the roof (referred to as ‘diminishing courses').

Stone roofs are also at a much steeper pitch than slate roofs, typically at a minimum pitch of 45 degrees, because stone is porous and it needs the extra gradient so that rain falls off more quickly. Welsh slate roofs, on the other hand, are less porous and can be as shallow as 17.5 degrees.

On stone roofs, only half the stone tile is visible. An inexperienced stone roofer may try and reduce the amount of stone used (thereby saving some money), but good horizontal and vertical laps are essential with stone, which unlike slate, does not rest flat against the battens, and therefore needs more coverage to ensure a watertight roof.

When repairing roofs, salvaged slates should be laid in their original orientation, because if the hidden, un-weathered surfaces are exposed they will deteriorate much quicker. Traditionally, stone slates were fixed with timber pegs (usually oak) hung over roof battens. These days, it is more common to use large headed copper roofing nails.

Don't be persuaded that your roof needs fascia or barge boards by a roofer either; traditional vernacular stone roofs don't usually have them, unless they are a Victorian interpretation.

Some of our clients want to replace an existing slate roof with stone because it looks more beautiful. If it's a listed building you probably won't be able to do it, and even if it isn't, I would often caution against such action as the materials used on a roof will go a long way to explaining the history and phasing of the building.

Having read the above, you will realise that you may not need the upheaval and expense of the wholesale replacement of a stone roof. So how can you prolong its life?

The easy answer is to prevent moss build up. Moss will absorb moisture and accelerate the delamination of the stone slates, so scraping off moss, ivy and other creepers will help reduce the cost of future repair bills.

Article by Neil Quinn, Conservation Architect of Yiangou Architects.

Playford Hall

Playford Hall | Suffolk

Planning has been obtained for the redevelopment of Playford Hall, Suffolk. A Grade II* listed building, the house is one of the most eminent properties in the county and once entertained King Henry VIII.


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Mr J Dunn | West Sussex

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Mr A Johnson | Hampshire

"A developer with others at heart. Very refreshing"
Mr J Farrow | Hampshire