Client - United Utilities Property Solutions Ltd

The 1936 filter house was in reasonable condition and capable of re-use without major or complete reconstruction. The property suffered from vandalism, theft and water ingress.

United Utilities Property Solutions Ltd commissioned Bench Architects to produce a condition survey and options appraisal for the reuse of the former Filter House.

The workscope included: documentary research to clarify conservation priorities, reverse alterations and inform design options; preparation of proposals based upon the archive research, sustainability, developer attraction and economic criteria; the adopted unitary development plan required that “the building is of permanent and substantial construction and is it capable of conversion to a new use without major or complete reconstruction.”

Further parameters of the instruction considered: that the design and development should enhance the character of the area; the character of the interior should be retained and the development is high calibre.

Bench Architects obtained Planning permission from Rochdale Metropolitan Borough Council for a single high-calibre dwelling with integral garaging and a swimming pool in a filter-bed recess. The consent allowed the property to be promptly sold at full market value. Its conversion to a unique dwelling provided an exemplar creative reuse of a redundant structure.

1. Source: http://www.whatsamsawtoday.com/2015/01/30/the-omg-blingtastic-home-under-the-hammer-with-one-of-the-largest-lounges-in-the-country/