Drones take surveying work up to new heights 

McAndrew Martin director of architecture James Bengree
McAndrew Martin director of architecture James Bengree
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DEMAND for cutting-edge drone technology is rising at a multi-disciplinary firm after its use on the renovation of historic hall.

Portsmouth firm McAndrew Martin deployed its remotely piloted quadcopter to gain aerial footage of the 136-year-old Ashburton Hall in Croydon to help restore the property to its former glory.

The 136-year-old Ashburton Hall in Croydon

The 136-year-old Ashburton Hall in Croydon

The firm’s architecture department used the high-quality imagery to create a virtual fly-through for the £1m project and to support a feasibility study and outline planning application.

McAndrew Martin, which is based at the Acorn Business Centre in Northarbour Road, is stepping up use of its aerial capabilities for each of its six directorates, including architecture, building surveying, structural engineering, general practice, project management and contracts administration, and mechanical and electrical engineering.

Director of architecture James Bengree said: ‘Ashburton Hall was in a dilapidated state following years of neglect with a range of problems including dry rot, mould and general disrepair.

‘Using the latest quadcopter technology, we were able to gain footage of the building from all angles which exposed the extent of the problems and allowed us to create a virtual representation of what could be achieved on the site.

‘We’re pleased to have contributed to the renovation of this wonderful building which is now a valuable and much-used community facility.’

James added: ‘The use of our quadcopter demonstrates how modern technology can play such a valuable role in the restoration of older assets.

‘As a leading multi-disciplinary firm we aim to stay on the cutting edge of new technology and our aerial capability is becoming increasingly important for all of our services.”

McAndrew Martin acted for Croydon Borough Council in the early stages of the project before refurbishment work was carried out. 

The hall celebrates the first anniversary of its opening to the public later this year. It was originally known as Stroud Green House after construction in 1882 and used as a convent before becoming a library.

With a café and a range of rooms, it is now used for meetings, concerts, seminars, parties, weddings, social events and activities.

Croydon Council invested £1m into the venue, now run by operator GLL.