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High Street, Exeter

Contract Value - £401,000.00

Location – Exeter

Client – Yelverton Properties

Project Name – 43-45 High Street, Exeter

Project Manager – Mr P. Board


In October 2016 The Clarence Hotel suffered a catastrophic fire which not only destroyed a majority of that building but also affected many of the surrounding ones as well. This was not only due to the fire itself but also collateral damage caused by the Fire Service trying to control and ultimately put the fire out.

Once of those businesses affected was Costa Coffee located at 43-45 The High Street, Exeter. The building sat empty for a number of years until submitted plans to utilise it and reopen as a new business were scrutinised and passed, meaning it could look forward to being brought back in to use. Again, Charteroak (South West) Limited have been fortunate to have been selected after submitting a bid, to work with Kirkham Board Associates on this project.

Due to the damage, significant Health and Safety requirements needed to be completed, with a clear plan on how to start and move the project on. Not only did there need to be carefully planning, but it had to meet guidance stipulated by the local Listed Building Control due to the building being a Grade II listed structure with lots of history going back to Tudor times. The original timber frame building itself, is three properties that survived the Blitz and post-war demolition. They date back to the 1500’s and are some of the oldest buildings to be found in Exeter.

Care and attention to detail was going to be needed to be taken from the outset and Charteroak (South West) Limited relished the opportunity.

The work itself was covering both inside and outside, with surveys being required before the work could really start. It needed to be ascertained as to what had been damaged, what was to remain, what needed to be removed and how to preserve or protect historical elements that had been exposed by the fire, or as work was going along.

The final use of the building will have the ground floor occupied for businesses to operate from, including a tailor suit retail centre and a baby/youth clothing store, with all other floors moth-balled for the time being….. awaiting the next project.


There of course have been aspects to the project that have required specialists to complete tasks allowing the Charteroak (South West) Limited team to progress the project. An initial step was an asbestos survey prior to work starting as there was, as you can imagine, a lot of clearance to be done to get at the task in hand. Once complete and appropriate Health and Safety put in place for all, work commenced in earnest.

Although the project plan has been followed, as with any work, a few surprises and changes have appeared causing delays and the impact of equipment/materials not being available have not helped. But open discussion with the client, along with flexibility with the project plan, it all moved forward to the planned finished date in March 2023 a little over 50 weeks in total from inception to delivery.

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