Approved inspectors

Compliance with building regulations is sometimes seen as an annoying layer of bureaucracy to be disposed of as cheaply as possible. Oculus, however, believe passionately that the provision of building control significantly improves building standards. Oculus provides a high quality, professional building control service that meets the needs, and aspirations of its clients whilst ensuring compliance. By becoming involved in the early stages of a project clients avoid expensive, abortive design work and the experienced consultants ensure a smooth transition from design through to construction on site.  Oculus is a member of the ACAI and through their membership have signed up to the Building Control Performance Standards and provide a service well in excess of the minimum recognised standards.

Oculus lead the way in providing a professional, efficient and cost-effective building control service

Oculus invests heavily in training to ensure the team has a full, in-depth and up-to-date knowledge of the discipline.  This combined with a passion, commitment and enthusiasm ensures the best possible service for their clients.  As a result they are able to bring real innovation and an enlightened approach to the Design Team.

As a Corporate Approved Inspector, Oculus, lead the way in providing a professional, efficient and cost effective building control service with many benefits and advantages over the service traditionally provided by the Local Authority including:

  • A flexible and non-bureaucratic approach to the privatised building control system.
  • Early involvement - Oculus are strong advocates of being available for early consultation on projects to avoid abortive design work, delays and potential conflicts.  As an integral member of the Design Team they give guidance on Building Regulations related matters at an early stage ensuring a smooth transition from design to construction on site.
  • A single point of contact regardless of the location of the project, simplifying project administration and aiding communication.
  • Knowledgeable and consistent interpretation of the Building Regulations and allied legislation.  This is particularly valuable for multiple retail outlets and other repetitive applications where consistency of approach is helpful and lends itself to ‘type-approvals’ for standard designs.
  • Competitive fees that are realistic to adequately resource the project – they do not provide unrealistically competitive fees purely to win the project without consideration of resourcing.
  • Structural design checked in-house by an experienced Structural Engineer.
  • A wealth of experience on establishing principles on important matters such as fire strategy and fire engineering approaches to fire safety.
  • Stage approvals where by design information is made available on a rolling programme. Oculus’s building control system gives greater flexibility as there are no bureaucratic statutory time limits.
  • Site inspections carried out qualified Chartered Building Control Surveyors during construction of the project undertaken at a frequency to suit the complexity and the construction programme.Experience and expertise in applying the Building Regulations to historic buildings.

CASE STUDY
The Gainsborough Bath Spa

The Gainsborough building situated in the heart of Bath was formerly part of the City of Bath College. A Grade II listed building from the Georgian period designed by John Pinch the Elder. The conversion to a 5* luxury hotel presented many challenges. The new multi-storey Lower Borough Walls wing reflects the host building architecturally. In the heart of the hotel lies Spa Village Bath, which is quite unique insofar as it has access to the natural thermal mineral-rich waters, making it the only natural thermal spa inside a hotel in the UK.

The main stair protection was particularly challenging as enclosing it was not an option from a conservation perspective. A solution of discreetly placed fire curtains operating on the fire alarm system to provide protection was developed. There are also isolated areas with sprinkler protection to provide an alternative to passive fire protection.

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CASE STUDY
Litfield Court

Litfield Court is situated in the affluent residential district of Clifton in the city of Bristol. It is comprised of two impressive Georgian style Grade II listed semi-detached former residential houses, constructed in c1830, with an ancillary coach house to the rear of the property. The two houses had until recently been used as a care home for the elderly.

The building was acquired by Kersfield Developments, who obtained permission to convert the property into 8 luxury apartments.

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CASE STUDY
The Walronds, Cullompton

The Walronds is a Listed Grade 1 building erected in 1605. It was originally constructed as a dwelling house but has been used as a meeting house at ground floor level with a maisonette formed within the two floors immediately over the ground floor.  The building was on the English Heritage register of buildings at risk.  The proposal involved the renovation and conservation of the building which includes improvements to fire safety.

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