This nine month contract on behalf of the Southwark Diocese, entailed the design and build of a new parsonage house adjacent to St Mary’s Church. Specifically, this comprised the design and undertaking of the substructures and three-storey building, garage, hard and soft landscaping, access, driveway and all new and existing boundary treatments.
A key requirement for the client was a traditional build sympathetic to the neighbouring church and surroundings but also energy efficient and environmentally sustainable. Whilst the practicalities of this were at times contradictory, the construction of the new vicarage was successfully carried out to achieve the requirements of the Government’s Code for Sustainable Homes (Level 4). This included a range of sustainable innovations and initiatives including solar thermals for hot water, rainwater harvesting, log burners with back boilers, double glazing, bicycle racks and the installation of A* energy-rated appliances.
The location of the site created particular challenges with regard to access and logistics; sitting tightly in-between adjoining occupied properties, all works stages were precision planned to ensure that safety was maximised and disruption minimised at all times. This included the erection of site boundary fencing, segregated walkways for the public and a traffic management plan to coordinate and supervise all deliveries and site traffic. Communication and stakeholder awareness was promoted regularly throughout the works via daily liaison with the church and neighbours and the posting of regular newsletter updates on the noticeboard. Prior to contract commencement, all nearby residents were notified of the works and the key Baxall staff contacts by letter; this information was refreshed at Resident Association meetings.
The Contract Manager became a member of the local Adam Garden Estate Committee and attended regular meetings at the church to discuss works progress and respond to any residents’ queries. This included the voluntary delivery of estate inspections and subsequent advice on improvements to security and building issues. The site team additionally hosted site visits and lectures for construction students at Mid-Kent College to observe the installation and operation of the renewable energy systems.
As a means to deter site theft and vandalism, reward posters were displayed on the site hoardings resulting in a significant reduction of such criminal and anti-social behaviour.
The contract was delivered to high standards of quality, safety and sustainability achieving the award of ‘Performance Beyond Compliance’ on the Considerate Constructors Scheme.