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The Lodge, Hafodunos Hall, Denbigshire, North wales

Client: Miss Sophie Wood

Local Authority: Conwy County Borough Council

The Grade II listed lodge is situated beside the main gates to the driveway to Hafodunos Hall, which is also listed in its own right and with which it holds considerable group value. Built in the mid-19th century, this single-storey Gothic Revival gate house is constructed in red brick with sandstone dressings and band courses, featuring a slate roof.

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The Proposal

These works centred on a historic lodge designed by architect Sir George Gilbert Scott – one of the most prominent architects of the Gothic Revival period. The client had secured listed building consent for the conversion of the Grade II listed lodge into private residential use. However, this was subject to a planning condition that the lodge should be subject to a Level 2 Building Recording prior to the commencement of the works. Blue Willow Heritage were brought on board to help manage this process to ensure the dischargement of this condition.

The Challenges

The original windows at the property had been lost due to vandalism at the site. The lack of use of the building was therefore clearly threatening its long-term conservation. Although the principle of conversion had been approved, prior to any historic building recording, it is required that a Written Scheme of Investigation (WSI) is prepared and approved by the council. This ensures that an appropriate methodology for the project has been selected. This requires sufficient levels of expertise in current archaeological standards alongside compliance with the relevant health and safety regulations – something which our team was fortunately well-versed in.

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The Solutions

Blue Willow Heritage prepared a comprehensive Written Scheme of Investigation (WSI) which was approved by the Conwy County Borough Council. Our team then carried out a Historic Building Recording (HBR) which strictly adhered to the guidance outlined by Historic England (2016), CIfA (2020), and the prepared WSI to ensure compliance with the relevant conditions and current archaeological standards. This recording exercise involved the preparation of a written and photographic record of the site, as well as contextual research to a Level 2 standard and scope.


An orthophoto was also prepared using photogrammetric techniques, allowing the preparation of an image of the principal elevation without distortion, which can be measured to scale. This will be especially useful for comparative studies on the domestic architecture of Sir George Gilbert Scott.

The Outcome

This project highlights how our team has experience in not only supporting development schemes from the design stage, but in joining projects mid-way through the process. This is possible through allocating sufficient time and resources to familiarise ourselves with the existing planning applications and constraints imposed by local authorities. A comprehensive record of the building was successfully compiled at Hafodunos Lodge, including research into unique brickwork patterns identified by our expert team. The conditions of listed building consent were successfully discharged, providing our client with the green light to convert the property into residential use.

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The design team for this project comprised Blue Willow Heritage and Gavin Blake Chartered Architect.

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