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Venturous builds: CRL provides warranties for historic glassworks renovation

 

CRL has assisted on providing flexible structural defects warranties for a £3.25 million luxury residential renovation of a historic former glassworks.

The structural defects insurance provider was selected by J G Woodcock to advise on the restoration of one of the country’s largest glass manufacturing sites, The Royal Brierley Glassworks in Dudley, West Midlands, which dates back to 1776.

The heritage site has now been transformed into an award-winning residential development of 10 two and three-bed houses and 17 one and two-bed apartments and houses, which have all been sold.

CRL were appointed midway through the scheme following the passing of entrepreneur and property developer John Woodcock in 2014, who was the head of the family business, John G Woodcock.

The Royal Brierley Glassworks in Dudley - awarded Royal Charter in the early 1900s – was bought by J G Woodcock in 2006 and had been in a state of ruin for more than 10 years.

J G Woodcock Contracts Manager John Turner, said CRL were appointed to put retrospective structural defects insurance in place and protect the properties by providing a 10-year warranty certification for people buying the homes.

When The Royal Brierley Glassworks scheme completed in October 2015, CRL’s 10 year structural defects insurance cover took effect and was passed on to the tenants or owners of the houses.

It assisted the family business in seeing through their father’s vision of creating luxury homes for families in the community, while sensitively restoring this historic building.

John Turner said: “CRL took all our requirements on board and worked with the local authority and the information they provided to draft a flexible warranty.

“We needed a project partner to assist and support us on the scheme.

“CRL was that partner, they formed a relationship with us and made the process easy as opposed to creating more red tape and resistance.

“There was a lot of emotion involved in this project for our family and they were sensitive to the circumstances as well as the unusual stage of construction to be instructed.”

The historical site brought numerous issues for the developer, which included maintaining the conservation of the building and making modern bespoke handmade metal framed double glazed windows to match the originals.

The listed chimney on the site needed work, as well as sound-proofing measures, to ensure the renovation adhered to national heritage requirements and retained the period features.

Under normal residential development circumstances, builders and contractors apply for structural warranties ahead of planning being submitted, or at least prior to the foundations being laid.

This is so structural defects insurance providers can assist on plans and inspect the development throughout construction.

CRL’s flexible solution of underwriting the policy retrospectively allowed plans for The Royal Brierley Glassworks to progress with the assurance of a warranty for the potential purchasing residents.

The appointment of CRL came following a recommendation from JHAI Building Control.

Following completion CRL has since provided 10-year structural defects insurance for three further J G Woodcock projects, including a £2.7million barn conversion, a new residential estate of five homes, all valued at £475,600 and a new half-million pound new build home in Telford.

John Turner said: “As a family business with a visual legacy to realise at Glassworks, we needed to know our development was being sensitively and efficiently handled. We deliberately sought project partners that we could form personable relationships with.”

He added: “CRL has been brilliant, a valuable partner on this project and several further schemes of ours. The level of customer service we have received from CRL has been phenomenal.

“We would recommend CRL to any residential developer or local builder that could benefit from additional property finance expertise in its team, to ensure the highest quality standards and cover.

“The company removes the headache and complexity of the warranty covers and allows us, the developer, to complete our tasks on time and to budget, we would not be without CRL.”

CRL’s 10 year structural defects insurance:

Venturous in spirit, CRL’s 10 year structural defects insurance is ideal for unusual building projects or materials. However, this not the limit of the insurers remit who also work with developers, self-build and housing associations. CRL’s range of insurance products cover:

 

Structural Defects - indemnity against defects in design, workmanship, materials or components of the property for 10 years after completion.

Road Bonds - property developers and house builders can guarantee satisfactory delivery of roads and enable them to be adopted on completion by the contractor.

Building Control Expertise - large construction, small extensions or property modification. CRL works with inspectors to ensure the safety of builders and end-users.

Developer insolvency cover - guarding against situations that might risk a build’s completion and insurance against the insolvency of the property developer.

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