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Western Building Consultants employ a number of Chartered Building Engineers and Architectural Technologists – if you are looking for basic structural engineering or Civil solutions in Bath then Western Building Consultants can help. Our practice contains Fellow and Chartered members of the Chartered Association of Building Engineers.
We can provide structural calculations for steel, timber and glu-lam beams. Usually where a simple opening is required between two rooms or to a domestic extension. The trend at the moment is to remodel your home or commercial premises usually to an open plan layout. To do this often, you will require calculations to justify the removal of walls and replacement with a structural member. We provide a simple cost-effective service, including a site visit with a price per beam costing. This allows you to easily budget the costs before our visit please contact the office on 01225 789307 to receive our full T&C’s and book in a visit.
We provide drawings and applications for basic Civil Engineering works such as dropped kerb applications and planning highways conditions such as to alter access etc. New developments and many householders often seek to install a new vehicle access from the public highway. This usually involves installing lower kerbstones with the pavement reconstructed at a new gradient. Drop kerb applications include both the physical lowering of the kerb and permission to allow a vehicle to cross the public footway which otherwise an offence under common law. As the applicant the cost of applying and construction of the dropped kerb is usually paid for by you.
Because you do not own the pavement outside of your house and do not have the right to drive over it, additional dropped kerbs can be seen as increasing highway safety risks. Only a fully designed proposal for a new access should be put forward as it is estimated around 60% of all dropped kerb applications are rejected. Many of these are rejected because a client has chosen to make the application themselves without the services of an engineering consultant.
Percolation Tests/Soakaway Tests determine whether the ground is suitable for soakaways and sceptic tanks and are becoming increasingly common in planning application conditions. Western Building Consultants can provide an excavation and trial pit service to determine if using the natural strata can work to effectively drain the development.
Soakaways work by storing the immediate surface water run-off allowing natural dissipation and attenuation. Surface water has been historically disposed of through public sewers or watercourses. Due to flooding issues the government and local authorities such as BANES have discounted the traditional piped approach to draining sites and are replacing them with SUDS (Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems).
To work out a soakaways size and suitability we need to carry out an onsite percolation test. A trial pit is excavated to represent the soakaway and the time taken for the water level to fall from 75% to 25% repeatedly is used to calculate the Soil Infiltration Rate (m/sec). Utilising this approach, we are then able to carry out an offsite Soakaway calculation demonstrating the type of Soakaway and size requirements.
If your development needs a soakaway design or any other of our engineering services, please get in contact with our Bath office on 01225 789307 or email [email protected].
If you are carrying out an extension or new build property in Bath and wish to build over a sewer, you need to get a build over agreement. You may also require an application if you are planning to build footing near to an existing sewer. Wessex Water will not always allow you to build over a sewer so it is important that you employ a consultant such as Western Building Consultants to give you the best chance of engineering a solution that will be acceptable to your local water authority.
Whether you need an agreement to build near a sewer depends on a number of issues, such as depth of the sewer, the diameter/type of sewer and the number of properties it serves. It can sometimes be prudent to instruct us to carry out a Wessex consultation or instruct a CCTV survey of the drainage system prior to designing the project as it might not be possible to design an extension or house over the existing pipework.
As sewers are frequently located running along the back of houses, build over agreements are usually needed for extensions. In fact, we estimated that when the sewers for adoption regulations were introduced 90% of our householder projects required consent.
Sometimes it is not possible to build over a sewer and the drainage may need to be altered (called a sewer diversion). Sewer diversions are generally quite expensive and must be carried out by licensed contractors. The water authority will generally require the sewer to be tested on completion and a bond held for a period of time to rectify any issues with the new drain. Western Building Consultants have negotiated several of these types of diversion and produced the drainage drawings to accompany the request for diversion. These must be designed to an adoptable standard and it is important that a competent engineer is appointed to specify them.
Being socially responsible and promoting excellent ethics is at the forefront of our business. Our staff are happy and content and this is shown through our positive approach to your project. We work to the highest professional standards as required by both the RICS and CIAT. You can rest assured that when you employ WBC you will be supporting an organisation that champions local, national and international projects through schemes such as FairTrade, Mentoring Plus and the Bath percent club. This is backed up by a rigorous Corporate Social Responsibility Policy. We sponsor many grass roots sports clubs such as Combe Down Rugby Club, Frome Park Bowls Club & Cardiff Harlequins.
We are realistic with timescales and honest about what you will receive. Most people underestimate the time involved with a building project, but we are upfront about what is involved and will be clear about how long a project might take. Throughout the project we will continue to update you about progress and will advise you if there will be a disruption in the timetable.
We have vast planning experience and are adaptable to most architectural styles and ages of buildings. We are perfectly able to adapt to the style of your property from contemporary to traditional, urban to rural. We have designed projects in most styles and can use our broad experience to help design the best solution for your property, using whatever construction technology best suits your needs. Whether you plan a modest alteration or something spectacular WBC can help you achieve your project goals.
We employ qualified professionals with a variety of skill sets and the latest training. many of our employees have specialist post graduate qualifications. We also train selected staff through university programmes and professional qualifications to ensure our clients get the best trained surveyors and up to date advice. You will receive a professional, comprehensive and cohesive consultation and guidance throughout the project, ensuring that your development is handled with a consultant level of knowledge.
We are here for you when you need us, with our survey to completion guarantee. You won’t be left alone, we will fit in wherever you need us in the project or guide you through the whole process. You will have the knowledge that someone is always at hand whatever level of service you need.
Whilst offering exceptional value for money we also bring a positive, approachable, pragmatic, realistic and well rounded attitude to your project. You will feel at ease discussing issues with your project, our pragmatic approach to design and refurbishment means that we can often deliver built in VALUE. One example of this is recognising where cost savings can be made in the design without compromising the overall scheme and offering a higher standard of technical specification over many of our competitors, this reduces the need for outside engineering input and ultimately saves you money in fees. We are grounded which means that we can deliver a build in a cost conscious manner in order to make sure our projects are buildable.
Where we do not have the in house skills to tackle an element of a project we are well networked locally to utilise outside consultants that we have built up relationships with over many years. You will get the best of local knowledge and be introduced to like minded trusted suppliers with excellent professional services.
We can provide the majority of services required for a small project in house, making us practically a one stop shop. Having most services in house means that we are often fully accountable for the professional services on your project, this ensures simplicity, communication and efficiency. By utilising a multi-disciplinary approach we are able to keep professional costs for the project extremely competitive and hassle free, essentially you only pay for one set of overheads.
We have unparalleled technical knowledge and produce comprehensive architectural designs and surveys. You will be getting market-leading technical advice that has been approached with imaginative problem-solving techniques. This helps us to identify potential problems with a build before they arise.
Our knowledge adds value, an example of this is that most architects do not provide any advice on the structure of a building during the building regulations approval stage, relying on a structural engineer to produce all work relating to the super structure. At Western Building Consultants we provide structural advice on many areas, such as timber design for floors and roofs, limiting the scope of the engineers work and saving you money.
Having a large team of surveyors means that your project is unlikely to be held up due to other circumstances, there will always be at least two surveyors familiar with the project therefore continuity and a personal service will be retained. On larger schemes a bigger team will be assembled with the required specialist knowledge to fully support your project.
No 1 Langstone Business Park,
Commerce Park, Unit R17, Marshall Way
2 Rush Hill
28 Cathedral Road
31 Berkeley Square
Unit 2, Byre Workshops, Winterbourne Court Farm Barn, Church Lane, Winterbourne
I have enjoyed working with Western Building Consultants on a complicated project for about 4 years now. During that time they have without fail given me a high level of customer service, being welcoming, responsive and competent.
As a customer I particularly appreciate that WBC are value for money. They also stick to their quotes and don’t add a lot of extras. Help and advice is always forthcoming generally at no extra charge.
Thank you so much for all your advice today. That was so very helpful, not only with the structure of the property but especially with your comments about the whole set up. I can see that we were within a gnat’s whisker of entering a complete can of worms… Thank you so much for saving us from making a stupid mistake.
Thanks to you both your help in this matter – you were both extremely efficient and accommodating (more than I can say about other companies I contacted).
Your professionalism has been invaluable, thank you.
Thank you for your extremely comprehensive report. It will be of immense help when deciding on the works we would like to carry out on the property. We have decided to take your advice and move into the property and live in it for a while to assess our requirements.
Thank you for your prompt service, could not have asked or expected more. I note your comments and in an ideal world everything would have been 1.
Will not hesitate to recommend you, and will make a point of letting the estate agent know this too.
I just wanted to say thank you very much for your thorough and clear report. It is written in an informative and jargon free way which has made a pretty hefty document ultimately digestible and easy to understand.
Hello Kerry, Many thanks for the report and invoice receipt.
Please pass on my thanks to Paul for the survey. In my working life, I read many stock survey reports – I work with social housing providers to set up their asset management strategies – and this was one of the clearest and most comprehensive I’ve seen.
Dear Paul, Thank you so much for your fast response and the detail in your report is very very good and greatly appreciated. Thank you for your efforts.
Many thanks for your swift and thorough return of this report, we so appreciate you getting this back to us on such a tight turn around this week, and on the first read it seems extremely clear and comprehensive.
Hi Kerry / Paul, Thanks for sending the survey across.
I’d also like to thank you for your excellent service and professionalism. I considered many surveyors before choosing to proceed with you and it’s clear that I made the right choice. I won’t hesitate to recommend you to family, friends and colleagues in the future.
“We have commissioned three building surveys from WBC until we found the house that was right for us and all thanks to you”
I never expected so much detail, the report was really great and there were things I never even considered, even being in the construction trade
The report was brilliant and went into so much detail, having had reports from other surveyors in the past this report was far superior
“Highly recommended. Good customer service over the phone and by email. Very quick: from the initial phone call booking a site visit to me receiving the calculations took only 8 days.”
“We used James Dean …Western Building Consultants as an architect. Very good”
“Good surveyors & structural engineers that we used were www.westernbuildingconsultants.com
We were really happy with them, they came highly recommended by several people”
“Excellent service and help from the initial design/planning stage through to the end of all works”
“I can recommend Western Building Consultants. They are great on structural calculations, advice and technical drawings to whatever extent you want. We used them for advice and calcs for taking out our main load bearing wall downstairs. They were recommended several times over when we started looking.”
“Superb, professional, efficient, friendly, positive”