Case Studies

St Georges Retreat

LOCATION Ditchling, West Sussex

Dorton Group have recently completed a £700,000 demolition and asbestos removal project at St Georges Retreat, Ditchling, West Sussex. The project was undertaken over three separate phases, between 2010 and 2011, working in conjunction with the planned redevelopment of the site.

The works involved a significant amount of asbestos removal with large scale demolition operations and the utilisation of temporary works around the retained and separated sections. Appointed as Principal Contractor, the works were carried out for the client direct, ‘Augustian Care’, who further appointed Gardiner Theobald LLP as project managers.

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St. George’s Retreat was built principally to care for the mentally and physically ill and was run by the sisters of St Augustine. The Augustinian Order was founded in 1842 in Bruges, Belgium by Reverend Canon Peter John Maes who devoted his life to the care of the mentally ill. The Sisters of St. Augustine was re-formed in 1866 when it established its first home and the Sisters have continued to care for those that need it ever since. Set in 300 acres of beautiful Sussex countryside, the estate has its own farm, lakes and leisure facilities for the use of the new residents moving into the newly built retirement apartments.

Some of the original structures and features have been retained and incorporated into the new design. Dorton have salvaged many of the items that would have been lost through the demolition process, which although difficult and labour intensive was well worth the effort to preserve a small part of our history.