Unitarian Chapel. Taunton, Somerset

The Chapel was constructed on a sloping site in 1721. Its interior is largely unaltered but the North Elevation facing the busy main road was remodelled in 1881 when an Italiniate frontage was added. Two former entrance doors were replaced by a central doorway and lobby set under the gallery. There is some evidence to support the view that the roof was altered and ceiling replaced at this time.

The building has suffered through the years with well intentioned repairs which have tended to trap moisture within the building or have failed in time due to mismatched materials. The nature of the alterations to the frontage hide a multitude of sins. A general failing of lead work, rainwater goods and cracking render decoration has meant long term rainwater penetration. A periodic use of the building has meant inadequate and inappropriate heating.

This practice was appointed to carry out repairs and decorations.

From conducting a condition survey of the building it was discovered that the main supporting roof truss had at some point slipped and fractured and was in danger of collapse. In consultation with Structural Engineers a steel plate and strap solution was devised to stabilise the roof. Other truss ends were plated at this time. The roof was stripped to allow easier access, insulated and felted. The front parapet gutter was rebuilt and re-leaded so as to reduce the lead gutter lengths between steps.

The buildings rainwater goods were overhauled and replaced and the buildings frontage cleaned, repaired and restored and a new decorative scheme devised to cope with the Northerly aspect and the road spray from the A38.