How Chawton Hill got to the heart of Oakhall

Dave HallByDave Hall

How Chawton Hill got to the heart of Oakhall

A church that originally cost £206 to build in 1894 now features a multi-use auditorium, office complex, cafe, classrooms and a nursery.

Oakhall Church, in Caterham, Surrey boasts a new all-purpose building – thanks, in part, to CRE exhibitors Chawton Hill who took on the mantle of project manager, quantity surveyor and principal designer. The quality of their work has been acknowledged by receipt of the Local Authority Building Control Building Excellence Award for the South East and the project will go into the national finals later this year.

Liaising closely with church officials, the work was overseen by Abigail Peters, Chawton Hill surveyor and project manager. Together, they were tasked to produce a building adaptable for multi-use. Derelict offices were demolished, old foundations removed and ground levels re-worked. A new steel-framed building was erected, clad with various materials including textured blockwork, through-colour rendering, brickwork and glazed curtain walling.

‘And the building is already making an impact in the community,’ said Peter Thompson, a former operations director for the church. With large glazed areas and a variety of roof levels with varying pitches, the church’s external appearance is striking. Inside it offers a high-quality finish with hardwood joinery, acoustic folding partitions and various flooring types.

It’s all a far cry from the building in Francis Road (then called Elizabeth Road) in Caterham –the site of which was bought for £32.

Chawton Hill are happy to chat to CRE visitors about all kinds of church building projects, large and small.

• Chawton Hill are on stand S108 at CRE National 2019

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Dave Hall

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