Unsupported browser

For a better experience please update your browser to its latest version.

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

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Donald Insall unwraps Elizabethan house overhaul

  • Comment

[First look + plans + project data] Donald Insall Associates has released these shots of its £10 million restoration and expansion of a dilapidated Elizabethan mansion in Anglesey

The 1569 Grade II*-listed Plas Coch house has been converted into the centre of a new lesiure centre and features a new, mainly glazed, spa pool building with four stone towers.

The scheme included restoring the building’s red sandstone and treat an infestation of dry rot.

The architect’s view

The owners of Plas Coch made it clear that the estate was to become one of the country’s best leisure parks. Central to their ambition was the mansion itself; and we started by researching its archive and investigating its structure. We soon found that not all was as it seemed when admiring its principal elevation, which overlooks the Menai Straits to Snowdonia. The familiar late 16th century ‘E’-shaped plan is in fact the result of a 19th century intervention when the right hand wing was added. Further extensions behind the house followed later in the 19th century; and less formal structures were added in the early 20th century between the house and an ornamental lake.

Repair of the house, which was suffering from a legacy of serious neglect, was urgent; but our clients’ overall business plan demanded that a revenue-generating new leisure centre and pool be built first. The principal range of the house was, therefore, cleared of debris, and left to dry out under a temporary roof whilst the new construction was devised.


Project data

Architects: Donald Insall Associates
Location: Plas Coch, Llanedwen, Anglesey
Type of Project: Conservation and new build
Structural Engineers: Complete Design Partnership
Project Architect: Tony Barton, Donald Insall Associates
Design Team: New Build Architect - Caroline Blakeley, Donald Insall Associates; Conservation Architect - Elinor Gray-Williams, Donald Insall Associates
Client: Talacre Beach Caravan Sales
Funding: Private
Tender date: Stage one July 2007, Stage two September 2007
Start on site date: September 2007
Contract duration: Phase one completed May 2009, Phase two completed Aug 2010
Gross internal floor area: 2,500m2
Form of contract and/or procurement: Traditional two-stage tender
Total cost: £10 million
M&E consultant: Bob Costello Associates
Quantity surveyor: John Pidgeon Partnership
Planning supervisor: John Pidgeon Partnership
Lighting consultant: Donald Insall Associates
Main contractor: Frank Galliers (until cessation of trading in Feb 2010) then Tapebrick
Selected subcontractors and suppliers: Charles F Jones & Sons (Planning Consultant); Treevolution (Arboriculturalist); David Longley (Archaeologist); Bratherton Park Design (Landscape Design); William Taylor Pools (pool supplier); Tower Surveys (measured survey); Maghansen (steelwork and glazing to pool enclosure); Demaus (dry rot monitoring); Greenbough (roofing); JRS Mechanical Services Ltd (mechanical); D&A Systems (electrical)
Main Sub contractor: Midlands Masonry
Annual CO2 emissions: not available


  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.