McCollum Conservation is a Chartered Building Surveying Practice, established in 2002 to provide owners and custodians of historic buildings with independent, quality, considered advice, tailored to their needs and respecting the individual nature and special qualities of their historic buildings.
The work of the Practice is divided between building surveying, architectural restoration projects and conservation advice. Our work on historic Houses, Churches, Vernacular structures, Industrial and Commercial buildings and Memorials and Follies has been recognised at local, national and European Level.
The Practice is headed by Chris McCollum a Chartered Building Surveyor Accredited by the RICS in historic building conservation. Chris has been involved in all aspects of building conservation for most of his professional life. He is driven by his enthusiasm for historic buildings and his empathy with their owners.
The Practice argues for timely conservation repair rather than major restoration and recommends “doing as little as possible, but as much as is necessary”. Our work is characterised by respect for the historic fabric and the avoidance of architectural hearsay which can distort the interpretation of the building for future generations.
When surveying, our first step is to understand the building that we are working on, so that we can understand what has caused the defect and reach the correct conclusion, thereby avoiding unnecessary or excessive repair. When repairing we do not seek to straighten or remove signs of age and natural weathering, but instead provide a component to continue to safely fulfil its original function.
We advocate a delicate touch even when larger intervention and restoration is needed and aim to avoid overenthusiastic restoration as a general rule. We feel that new interventions should be of their time, but not scream at the original architecturally. We specify materials which are compatible with the historic fabric so that we do not exacerbate decay or prevent future treatments.