By continuing to use the site you agree to our Privacy & Cookies policy

Your browser seems to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser.


Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.




I was very interested to read about Inskip + Jenkins' restoration of Moggerhanger House (AJ 03.05.07). The painstaking investigative work has resulted in the careful and attentive restoration of an outstanding example of Georgian architecture.

Having worked on a large number of heritage projects, as well as representing the UK on the EU-funded project to evaluate fire risk to European cultural heritage, I am acutely aware of the challenges that these projects pose to the design team. The same challenges also provide a great opportunity for innovation. So it was immensely disappointing to see, in two of the photos, smoke detectors located on the ceiling, especially as one of the rooms was described as having the most important interior in the building.

With a little imagination it is possible to provide an equal or greater level of protection with minimal impact on aesthetics. At the very least, smoke detectors of the type shown can be painted to match the background, but a far better effect can be achieved by using some of the other technology available to the fire engineer.

In heritage buildings, where any intervention should be minimal, the appointment of an experienced fire engineer can avoid such absurdities and can provide a fire-protection strategy that meets the needs of the various stakeholders in a way that is sympathetic to the building.

Steve Cooper, director, Cundall Fire Engineering

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment.

The searchable digital buildings archive with drawings from more than 1,500 projects

AJ newsletters