What are the Calthorpe Estates?

The Calthorpe Estates cover a large, 1,600-acre area of Birmingham, centred on the suburb of Edgbaston. In the 18th century, as the city grew in importance, the landowner Baron Calthorpe wanted to maintain an attractively low density suburb close to the growing town. He did so by leasing the land with covenants that forbade dense land  development and stipulated minimum amounts to be spent on building properties to make sure construction quality was high. 

Since then, Estate has been carefully managed to ensure a high standard of architecture and appropriate town planning and development to preserve the attractive nature of the area. These efforts have made Edgbaston one of the best areas of the country to live and work in. 

What do the Calthorpe Estates do?

Thanks to the work of Calthorpe Estates, Edgbaston is known as being a verdant, low-density suburb close to the centre of Birmingham with cohesive and attractive architecture. In the post-war years there was a movement to increase the density of the residential areas close to the city centre to absorb the growing population. 

However, as the freeholder for a large part of the suburb, Calthorpe Estates were reluctant to alter the character of the area, and so created a few strategic sites of high rise residential projects along with further housing developments to infill bomb sites, to meet the demand. Meeting this demand is done with careful design and a concentration of projects such as Edgbaston Village and the redevelopment of Pebble Mill. 

Much like in any other urban conservation area, building or developing on Calthorpe Estates land is certainly possible (and we have worked on dozens of projects in the area – take a look at our project map) but does require architects experienced in top-quality design and the Estate’s stringent development guidelines, as all building works require Calthorpe Estates’ written consent under the Residents’ Scheme of Management

highfield 1
Highfield Road
our projects
Simpsons Restaurant

How can I build or extend on the Calthorpe Estates?

Given the special nature of the area, Calthorpe Estates are keen for any redevelopment work to preserve and improve the architectural quality of the affected property and while they are not averse to change, they do expect a competent architect experienced in working with the Estates to be involved.

In addition, Calthorpe Estates recommend contacting their agents, Mainstay, as well as Birmingham City Council Planning Department to discuss development proposals informally before making a formal application, as this usually saves time, effort and cost by highlighting specific or material matters. 

Our experience has shown that involving an architect at an early stage is an effective and instructive early step that helps shape the project and avoids conflict and rejection by either Birmingham City Council or Calthorpe Estates.

calthorpe estates
George Road
norfolk road 2
Norfolk Road

How can I get building consent on the Calthorpe Estates?

As experts in restoration and heritage projects, Lapworth Architects have frequently worked with Calthorpe Estates on multiple projects in Edgbaston on Highfield Road, George Road and Hagley Road, as well as on the refurbishment of Simpsons restaurant, and on several conversion projects in the area. 

With our long-standing working relationship, we have also designed several new build houses in Edgbaston, making the most of Calthorpe’s guidelines on improving the character and appearance of the Estate to create handsome family homes. Our work with Estates means that we are experts in heritage architecture sympathetic to the existing buildings, and also have professional experience of the complex planning issues that come with such a prestigious area. 

If you are looking to extend your home or create a new build project on the Calthorpe Estates, don’t hesitate to get in contact with us to book a free consultation or to discuss your project informally. Together, Lapworth and Calthorpe are ensuring the economic vitality of Edgbaston and the surrounding areas by preserving and futureproofing its unique architecture, urban design and character. 

Call us on 0121 455 0032 today to book your
FREE consultation

We are award-winning architects working across the entire West Midlands to help you at every step of the process, whether you’re needing an extension, developing land or designing a new build house.

– Birmingham
– Bromsgrove
– Edgbaston
– Leamington
– Solihull

– Stratford-on-Avon
– Sutton Coldfield
– Walsall
– Warwick
– Wolverhampton

J F
J F
10:56 23 May 20
I contacted lapworth to carry out a site survey for a self build. I got great advice and a very fast turn around of my... report. We will definitely be using lapworth again for our designs.read more
nibha hegde
nibha hegde
19:51 20 Apr 20
I am extremely pleased with Lapworth architects. I just told them in my amateur way what I imagined or wanted in my... bungalow and they drew lovely accurate plans. Michael patiently took on board my multiple requests to make changes as new ideas came to me and he always incorporated them with even further development which shows his expertise. Michael provided monthly supervision service which I think is priceless and is the best part of hiring him!. He visited the site regularly, liaised with various other professionals involved like building control people, engineers, etc, did trouble shooting promptly, ensured costing is kept to minimum, and made sure the work is being carried out to the highest standards in a timely manner. The contractors and builders have also found this service very useful because of helpful professional advise and on-site discussions. I have noted from his late night/weekend emails/calls that Michael has worked very hard on my project- which was a total makeover of a rather dilapidated-closed- space building with poor lighting and access- and made it into a well lit, open spaced bright modern bungalow. He has always kept me well informed. Lastly, I have to say, because of his dedication, the project has carried on with practically no stress or worries imparted to me! He is well connected and tendered my project to a very good builder- for which `I am grateful. I sometimes hear other friends' stories of 'nightmare building projects' and I secretly thank my stars that I gave this project to Lapworth. I wish Michael and his team well. If I were lucky enough to acquire another property, I will promptly give the project to Lapworth again! :)read more
Hugh Humphreys
Hugh Humphreys
23:23 19 Feb 20
Did a very competent job with good value for money, understood my needs and produced the drawings for a complex... extension quickly. Made the small changes requested and continued to provide support on detail on request. I would use them again on further projectsread more
Kay Bedi
Kay Bedi
16:54 01 Feb 20
I used Lapworth after using two different architects who were unable to secure planning permission due to lack of... knowledge in relation to green belt policy and lack of expertise in relation to producing reports alongside planning applications. Ultimately these were the two things that were required to get out planning application approved and we were impressed with the knowledge, expertise and professionalism of everyone we had interactions with at the firm. The firm is better value for money than others we have used as they provide better quality of service at the same price. I would definitely use them again and would recommend them. The staff have a great attitude and work hard to get you the outcome you want. We finally got our application approved and if we had come to Lapworth to start with we would not have wasted two years and a considerable amount of money trying to get planning approved. Thanks to all at Lapworth, particularly Tristan and Tumi for working so hard and providing a great customer service and quality work also thank you to Mike for the great service he has provided. Kayread more
Colin Andrews
Colin Andrews
16:25 15 Jan 20
I can honestly say I don't give reviews, but on this occasion I felt I must. Michael Singh of Lapworth Architects spoke... on behalf of my Company's planning application at Walsall Planning committee for an Adventure Golf Course situated in the Green Belt. The application was submitted in February 2018 and at last came before committee with over 40 objections from residents. Michael Singh spoke on my behalf and obviously new his stuff. He showed he cared about this application. His passion caused others to be convinced not just because of his force of reasoning, but also because he was visibly enjoying the beliefs he wanted the committee to accept. Michael Singh won over the committee members through his professional manner. Accurate, competent, credible, intelligent, knowledgeable, likeable, and believable. The committee voted in favour and gave planning approval. I highly recommend Lapworth Architect's. I definitely will use them again. Thank you so much Michael you were just BRILLIANT Regards Colin Andrews Directorread more
Rajashankar rao
Rajashankar rao
09:53 18 Feb 19
We ( me and my wife) would definitely recommend Lapworth architects without any hesitation.They have been professional... and very prompt in answering our issues. They have been efficient in getting the plans we desired and did the whole application from scratch without any delays. We personally had Manraj to look into our case and absolutely none issues. He has been very efficient in chasing the application process along with updates and infact, got the application approved without any changes.read more
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