Interviewer: I’m going to go through this so good morning I’m Joined with Jared Taylor the owner of Brayford Designs who architect in Lincoln. Good morning Jared.
Interviewee: Good morning.
Interviewer: I’m wondering if you could tell me a little bit about yourself how you actually got started.
Interviewee: My name is Jared traditionally I’m a qualified civil structure engineer. I’ve got a diploma in Civil structure engineer in a built environment around 2015, 2016 I decided to look into explore more architectural technology works. It started with a project on my own house actually where I did the design for 2 extensions on my own properties from there I built relationship with Lincoln city council, builder control office, and the planning department. I entered into the LABC partnership scheme. From there it kind of developed more and more people getting in contact with me to produce architectural design and building regulation drawing, full plans submissions and just to generally give them advice. So in 2016 I decided to set up a business formally called concept extension design and Brayford designs and that was predominantly looking at residential extensions we did take on a few commercial builds in there and they have to comply with different parts of regulations to what the residential do. But predominantly we focus on residential extensions so this will be small things like kitchen extension to 2 story extensions in cooperating new living space downstairs and new bedrooms upstairs, on Suite areas dressing areas but yes we mainly decided to focus on residential.
Interviewer: Sounds quite a lot sounds like a lot of work. So to do drawings is there any special tools that you use?
Interviewee: Yes we use CAD software which is computer and design software. So what that does I try and liken it to the old etcha sketch where it draws nice straight lines for you but you still have to have that human interface with it to input all of the information and to make sure that the information that’s getting drawn on there is compliant with building regulations. So to give an example of that you may want to have a full glass glazed wall at the end. I can draw that’s absolutely fine I can tell Auto CAD that that’s what we want to draw but I wouldn’t comply with building regulations because there’d be some more extra structural elements to ensure that the walls don’t collapse in on themselves because the glazed area won’t be structural. So yes you need that human interface with the software there to ensure that it’s all compliant.
Interviewer: Wow, so I guess every job is a challenge every job it’s never the same.
Interviewee: Every scheme has its unique challenges that may be aesthetic challenges that may be that it’s within a conservation area. So you’ve got the enhanced element of having to submit a heritage statement to say how the development will enhance the character of the area. And you’ve actually got the conversation officers which will get involved with the planning application. So each project will have its own constraints. What we have to do is we have to find a balance between clients desire and what’s going to give us the best likelihood of success and be balanced in varying degrees. So we can take a punt and push the boundaries of what would be deemed as acceptable within the local authority planning control department eyes and the conservation officers eyes. Or we could go very conservative and we can say actually let’s give this 90% chance of success I will compromise on some of the aesthetic design that we would like to see implemented.
Interviewee: There is 2 parts to any construction project. The first part is planning permission so planning permission essentially gives you permission to build something. So if we look at a garage, for example, the planning permission will give details on the aesthetics of that. What materials are you going to use so what it’s going to look like? They’re not looking at the engineering properties of those materials they’re looking at the aesthetic properties of those materials, so is it a brown brick is it a white render? Is it a white window is it grey window? That’s the detail of planning permission would want to know. Building regulations and planning permission sorry would also want to know what the use of the room is because it’s going to be used for commercial element you have to make sure you got a change of use in there as well. So it could be the change in the residential property into a commercial property into a shop you’d have to do planning permission for change of use. The next part then so what we always do is we’ll get you through planning permission first so you have the grant to build something that represents that will be in keeping with the design for where it’s going to be sited and the appearance of that. The next step then is building regulations, so building regulations wants to know what materials are you going to use. What the engineering properties of those materials and how they comply with the different parts of the building regulations, for example, how environmentally friendly it is so deal with heat loss from buildings and things like that so.
The analogy I tend to use with all of my clients is the chocolate tea pot analogy planning permission wants to know what it’s going to look like, how ornate it’s going to look like and what color it is. So if we say a chocolate tea pot, it’s chocolate tea pot it’s chocolate coloured it’s brown it’s nicely ornately engraved but the downside is as soon as you put your hot water into it it’s going to melt planning permission aren’t too concerned that it’s going to melt as soon as you put hot water into it. They just want to know that it’s going to be nicely ornate engraved chocolate tea pot. Building regs will come along and say you can’t make that out of chocolate it’s going to melt. Build it out of concrete, you can’t build out of concrete because aesthetically concrete has different principles to chocolate tea pot. So that’s where my job is to try and harmonize the two you know I can get you a nicely engraved tea pot ones that made out of chocolate but also one be made out of concrete so we got to try and find a solution which works the two.
Interviewer: I see, so that answers a lot of questions because people I’m pretty sure must get confused on what they actually need for their project at home.
Interviewee: I think the big thing with the clients that we try and explain to them is that it doesn’t end with planning permission so although we have planning permission that doesn’t grant them the right to construct that property or that extension. So they then need to apply for a building notice or full planning permission to build and control and then the building inspector will then come out and do regular visits at certain stages.
Interviewer: Yea I totally get it okay so you work obviously you work with your clients, what about the builders that actually do the work?
Interviewee: Yea we do harmonize with the builders this could be a lot of my work once designed I could pass on details for builders in the areas competent builders. And vice-versa some competent builders pass work onto me whether been engaged by clients in terms of I need planning permission and they engage with myself so there is a harmony between the two trades there. If a client already has a builder in mind once I’ve done my first draft I will ask you back and send that directly to the builder for comment because to look at something in plan it look like it can integrate with the building but you need the builder to say whether it has any build ability concerns, and whether it can actually build the build within budget as well and budget is a big thing that we need to be mindful. so I’d always if there was a builder already engaged by the client I’d always try and engage with them and come up with a collaborative design.
Interviewer: That’s brilliant last one last question and basically you’ve answered a lot of questions and the local people of Lincoln obviously if they’re looking for an architect why should they choose Brayford Designs?
Interviewee: Yup it’s a tough one that I could give you all the different answers of why they should choose me. The main ones are is that I’m local I’d be sensitive to the needs of the local area I have the relationship already built with North Kestevan district council West Lindsey district council, Lincoln City Council. So I know all the contacts within the planning office and the same with building control as well I have the contact in North Kestevan, West Lindsey, Lincoln building control I’m part of the LABC scheme which means that I have a direct link into the building control office in Lincoln now if you’re development seems will fall outside of Lincoln City’s jurisdiction that doesn’t matter that can still approve the plans and the needs can adopted by any authority in England and Wales. So it’s a one stop shop for me I have that direct link and it kind of leads to swifter process. So they would be approved quicker and I like to once these plans are submitted I will engage with the planning officer once I’ve had the acknowledgment letter so we work with the planning officer through the approval process. So if there’s any concerns that the planning officer has I engage with them we’re developing collaborative solutions so if their concern that they may have been a dominant or an over bearing presence caused by this extension. I’d work them to come up with a simple solution I’ll feed that back to the client and we can may be able to in cooperate that within the design. So it’s not a lot of clients will this that we submit the application and it’s granted or refused, not with Brayford design the application goes in, its acknowledged and validated and then we work with the planning officer to come up with a suitable solution. So what we don’t get to in the time is that we get a letter saying refuse because I’ve explored every opportunity to resolve their concerns that they may have with the design and I currently have 100% success rate.
Interviewer: You can’t ask for more than that.
Interviewee: I should have lead with that really.
Interviewer: So that’s why you choose for any architectural work Brayford Design Based in Lincoln that’s your first choice. Thank very much it’s been a pleasure and hope to speak again soon thanks very much.
Interviewee: Thank you.