A Masterclass in Choosing an Architect

We were asked by the organisers of the Homebuilding & Renovating Show in Harrogate to do a masterclass on “Choosing an Architect”.

Neil Andrews shared his 25 years of experience, skill and knowledge to an interested audience in the convention centre, taking them through the different stages of a project. This article is a reflection of that talk.


Stanton Andrews Architects

At Stanton Andrews Architects, we are happy to offer our advice on a project and will often give a free consultation to people who approach us with their proposals for a new building, remodel or extension.

Summary of our Approach

RIBA Work Stage 0-2  Definition and Feasibility

Early involvement allows the architect to understand your needs. Working together to define your aspirations, help prepare a clear brief and determine a realistic budget.

  • Feasibility – series of meeting to explore options and present alternatives
  • Appreciation of existing arrangement and setting
  • Consideration of statutory policies
  • Natural light and orientation
  • 3D modelling
  • “Ball Park” indicative costings

RIBA Work Stage 3 Planning

Your architect will be able to advise on the best approach to secure Planning Permission (if it is required) and the likelihood of success. Permitted Development Rights (PD Rights) allow for certain works to be undertaken without requiring Planning Permission.

  • Pre-application submission and meetings with the Local Authority’s Planning Department.
  • Tweak the scheme to reflect the comments received
  • Submit Planning Application, including drawings, design statement and reports.
  • Liaise with the Planners for a successful (hopefully) outcome.
Building in Project - Stanton Andrews Project
Building in progress - a Stanton Andrews project
Stanton Andrews project

RIBA Work Stage No 4  Technical

Good technical drawings not only describe what is to be built, they also define exactly the standards that are required.

  • Detailed construction drawings
  • Advise on consultants
  • Obtain Building Regulations Approval
  • Advise on potential contractors
  • Arrange for competitive tender quotations

RIBA Work Stage No 5 Construction

GET A CONTRACT – A contract not only defines what is to be built, for how and when, it also sets out what happens when things go wrong.

  • Advise on contract
  • Administration of contract
  • Site Meetings
  • Respond to queries
  • Valuations
  • Certification

RIBA work Stage No 6 Complete

The 8 Stages of the RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects) Plan of Work

  • Strategic Definition 0
  • Preparation and Brief 1
  • Concept Design 2
  • Developed Design 3
  • Technical Design 4
  • Construction 5
  • Handover and Close Out 6
  • In Use 7
Neil Andrews in Clitheroe, Lancashire, UK on Houzz