Sefton Council’s Conservation Team and Southport Townscape Heritage Project have just launched two downloadable guides to maintaining historic homes and energy efficiency. With so many of Southport’s buildings dating back at least 100 years, these guides cover lots of people’s homes, even if not listed or in a conservation area. And they’re both full of common sense ideas that anyone might find useful.
You’ll find links to view and download the guides at the bottom of this page. But first, let’s hear from Agustina Solassi, Conservation Officer, who created the guides together with Alice Nottingham, Southport THP’s intern 2021-22. Agustina kindly agreed to answer some questions about her job, the guides, and – the big one – what kind of sandcastle she’d build!
What does your job as Conservation Officer entail?
My responsibility as a conservation officer is to provide specialist technical advice relating to historic buildings, conservation areas and other design matters in relation to planning applications and other type of developments.
Best bit of the job?
Being able to see some amazing historic buildings!
Which historic building in Southport interests you most – and why?
My favourite building is definitely 478-481 Lord Street, love its eclectic aesthetic. However, I have a special appreciation for Victoria Baths as I have been involved in the urgent works we carried out in 2021. [Agustina is certainly consistent! Read more in Our Favourite Buildings.]
Why have you produced these guides to maintaining and saving energy in historic buildings? Who are they for?
We know that taking care of historic buildings can be a bit delicate. With these guides anyone living or working in a historic building will learn how to take care of them in a proper manner and do alterations without compromising the character of the building.
What’s your top tip for maintaining a building?
Regular inspections, taking care of the problem sooner than later will save time and money in the long run. You can find a maintenance checklist at the end of the guidance to help you with the inspections.
What’s your top tip for saving energy?
Small changes in our lifestyle can have a big impact regarding saving energy. Developing mindful habits and minor interventions without affecting the character of the building will help improve energy performance.
If you built a sandcastle on the beach, what would it look like?
Definitely as a neo-Gothic castle full of spires! Gothic is my favourite architectural style, full of metaphors and intricate features.