Warren House, Kimbolton

client: The Landmark Trust
engineer: Edward Morton
status: Completed 2012
value: £610k
role: Structural Engineers
awards:
Winner of the Eastern Region RICS Conservation Award 2013

The Warren House was built for the ‘warrener’ who nurtured and cared for the estate rabbits, an important and valued source of meat. The original timber framed building largely buried in the later alterations is thought to date to around the 1630-40’s and is linked to Kimbolton Castle which it overlooks from its position high up on the hill.

Significant alternations were made, probably in the eighteenth century to create a more pleasing or ‘eye-catching’ structure with the  addition of the elegant masonry frontage and porch and which could well be the work of one of the major Architects of the period who were working at the castle including Vanbrugh, Hawksmoor, Archer or Robert Adam.

When the Landmark Trust came into ownership of the building we undertook a detailed structural survey to assess the effect of long term decay and movement which had occurred. Of particular concern was the relatively nominal masonry at first floor level with the numerous openings which had been blocked up. We suspect as a way of providing greater stability to the structure.

A carefully drawn up schedule of repairs was developed in conjunction with the Architect, which included the carefully integration of the surviving timber frame and masonry elements to ensure greater integrity of the building for the long term.

A lost extension was re-built using sustainably materials including hempcrete for the walls and limecrete for the floors.

The interior was carefully repaired in a humble fashion to reflect the fact that this was a simple cottage, not intended for the estate owners to visit, but simply to be viewed from a far.

We are pleased to have assisted The Landmark Trust on the rescue of another important historic and unusual building which is now in full use as holiday lets.  The standard of work has gained recognition as Winner of the Eastern Region RICS Conservation Award 2013.