Category Archives: Blog Post

Dominic Godman gets in touch

Oh, the wonders of the World Wide inter-thingy!

Dominic Godman, whose Grandfather was the last Joseph Godman to own Park Hatch, gets in touch from Singapore, where he lives, via this web site to say hi.

His Father was born at PH and remembered it well.

Dominic and his Mother plan to visit the site next year

Meantime, he sent some fabulous photos of the original PH which have been added to the ‘History of the main House’ page.

Garden Cottage outbuildings exposed

As a result of work to clear the area around GC, including taking down a large oak tree too close to the house, we now – 24 August 2012 – have an idea of what the outbuildings look like.

The round building – the Venison slaughter house (see “The Outbuildings” for more info) – will remain.

We plan to demolish most of the lean to gardeners sheds, keeping one end to house the heating equipment for GC, and keeping the wall and levelling the garden up to it.  In the falling down part seen in the foreground below, we have found one of the original park gates, though its not in good enough condition to rehang at the moment.


Clearing the ivy, we uncover a beautiful gate in the wall…

Early October and the lean to’s come down revealing the beautiful garden wall

Early November and the rebuild of the sheds to be a plant room for Garden cottage is well underway..




Replacing the Ballustrade wall

The Blog photo (on the main page) with the washing hanging out to dry! was taken pre purchase and shows the ballustrade wall from below, in what was then the Garden Cottage garden.

This was original (1850s) but had clearly been patched up several times over the years.

When we bought PH, it had slumped and had a huge crack in the lower level.  Now, seven months later, it has moved and cracked a great deal further.

Pre work :-

15 August 2012 – Work begins on demolishing it :-

Rebuilding commences – we are having to build two platforms to make sure it stays up this time.  This is the lower wall, to be 2 metres high.

Two days later, the second tier is being built:-


This is really Boring!!!

In June 2012, we had a bore hole and two trial pits dug at the site to assess what sort of foundations we need.

No surprises – as we are located in the Surrey Weald – it was weald Clay all the way down to 20 metres.  They didn’t need to go any further.




Clearing years of growth

Feb 2012

Our first task, on acquiring the site, was to find out what we had!

Much of the land around the house was overgrown with Laurel bushes and Buddleia.

This is the yard between the Garden Cottage and Garages:-

This is the front path to Park Hatch

This is the main drive down to the Park

This is the yard entrance

It took a week of heavy machinery and chainsaws to clear all of this







Planning – how to be driven insane in just a few months!

Our local planning authority is Waverley

Our approach (Wrong!)

The current chalet bungalow has a footprint of 200sq metres and the first floor is the same, although it tapers in as the first floor is in the roof of the building – chalet style.

We believe the property has habitable living space of 400 sq ms.

Waverley policy RD2 allows buildings to be extended by 40% – i.e. 160 sq ms

Permitted development rights allow a further 80 sq ms to be built

Policy RD2A allows a house when demolished to be rebuilt at 110% of the size

So, 400 + 160 + 80 *110% gives 700+ sq ms.

We therefore applied for permission to build a 537 sq m house.  Simples!!!

1250-P1A Park Hatch Ground

1250-P4 Park Hatch- North – South Elevation

Waverley’s approach (Right!)

There are 3 tricks:-

  1. The habitable living space of the chalet has to exclude all areas on the first floor under 1.5m.  Children and dwarfs are excluded from their world.  Thus they say the existing house is only 326 sq ms.
  2. You cannot combine the above policies for 40% extension and 10% rebuild.  First we must build the extension – cost circa £50k to £100k – and then knock it down!!!!!!  (I promise I am not making this up) or you can build the new house and then knock down one wall and extend the property by 40%.
  3. Permission when granted will remove all permitted development rights from the property.  They are therefore depriving their ratepayers of rights given by the national government.

So we can only do 326 +130 = 456 then demolish and rebuild at 500 sq ms.

The house we designed is therefore too large.

Our local paper summed up the situation well…

Surrey Advertiser

Current position – July 2012

We are talking to Waverley about a scheme where we apply for a 35% extension, retaining our Permitted Development rights;  and then, before we build the extension, apply to demolish and build a 507 sq m house.  Watch this space for further updates!