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Local Builder Nominated For RICS Award

A CHARLTON-based building firm has been shortlisted for two prestigious industry awards.

Stoodley Building Contractors will attend this year’s Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Awards 2019, South East on May 16 at Hilton at the Ageas Bowl, Southampton.

The company faces competition from eight nominees in the Commercial category and four in the Tourism and Leisure category.

“We’re up against some pretty tough competition,” said company director Stephen Stoodley.

“But we think ours is as good as anything else that has been shortlisted.”

Stephen’s company was nominated for its work at Gambledown Farm, in Sherfield English near Romsey.

The project, carried out with the help of Studio Four Architects and Andrew Waring Associates, saw several old farm buildings converted into holiday cottages. It also involved constructing an oak-framed triple garage and refurbishing a large multi-purpose barn.

A challenging job was made all the more difficult by the need to underpin many of the buildings with new foundations. Three of the old barns were also subject to bat licenses, which are devised to protect the creatures and their resting places.

“One of the conditions of the bat licence was to construct a new bat loft in one of the holiday cottages.

“The Ecologist commented that the newly constructed bat loft was the best bat loft that she had ever seen.”

Stoodley Building Contractors was originally set up by Stephen’s father in 1970.

Stephen joined the family business in 1981 and has largely remained in Andover and the surrounding villages since. Most of the workers Stephen employs are also local to the area.

He adds: “It’s always been very important to me to employ local skilled tradesman whom I have known for a number of years, some since I left school and some throughout the 38 years I have worked in the building industry.”
Stephen offered special thanks to the clients, Richard and Tamara Arnison-Newgass, without whom the project would not have been possible.

Richard and Tamara live on the 270-acre site, and as well as managing the holiday cottages they also own a farm and a glamping business.

“They have really created something quite special down there.

“If you look at the reviews they speak for themselves. Everyone has been very complimentary about the place.”