Brief and Response
Fairnilee House is a large listed mansion in the Scottish Borders. A year or two before our involvement it had been refurbished to a high standard. In 2005 it suffered a devastating fire in one of its roofs but, remarkably, quick action by the factors of the estate resulted in a temporary roof being promptly installed and although there was extensive damage to the upper floors it was possible for the lower parts of the building to remain occupied throughout
the reinstatement works. This was a major project both in terms of renewing the badly fire damaged roof and in making good extensive water damage cause by fire fighting water. Bizarrely 8 years later there was another fire which destroyed another of its roofs and once again prompt action by the factors resulted in a temporary roof covering making it possible to reinstate the building while it remained in occupation. This fire was equally as damaging
as the previous one. In both cases it was established by forensic investigations that the fires were entirely accidental, cause by electrical defects for which no-one was to blame. The decision by the occupants to remain in place was theirs and was accommodated as efficiently as possible but inevitably resulted in a significant reduction in quality of life while the works progressed.