CJ consulting
CJ consulting

Made in Wales

RIBA SCA locations in Wales 2023

Caroline James BSc (Hons) BArch RIBA SCA is a Chartered Architect and accredited Specialist Conservation Architect on the Royal Institute of British Architects Conservation Register.  Architect’s on this top tier of accreditation have demonstrated their expertise for working on the most protected buildings/sites and are described by the RIBA as having:


authoritative knowledge of conservation practice and extensive experience of working with heritage buildings


Many sources of grant funding require some form of conservation accreditation and there are currently only a handful of RIBA SCA Architects based in Wales.  This means significant parts of the country lack local access to this specialism.


Born and raised in the upland fringes of NW Carmarthenshire, Caroline studied at the Welsh School of Architecture in Cardiff and went straight into conservation practice.  Her upbringing means she has a particular interest in rural buildings and vernacular architecture.  Over the last 25+ years' she has worked for a number of practices in England and Wales and a selection of this heritage work can be found below.  She has also been appointed by the Bishop of St Davids as a specialist advisor to the Diocesan Advisory Committee.


Towards the end of 2016 Caroline started freelance work and created CJ consulting from her base in west Wales with the aim of helping anyone struggling with their old building.


CJC conservation philosophy 

  • All layers of a building should be respected because our values change with time.  What is unimportant today may be invaluable in the future.  
  • Although we all have a responsibility to keep work to the minimum, our built heritage needs to evolve without sacrificing earlier fabric.  New work should always be made to fit the old with sagging or bulging from age left uncorrected so that as much of the older building can survive.  
  • Repairs can be sympathetically beautiful, informative and add more value.  Tried and tested materials and techniques should be used for as long as possible so that these skills can pass down the generations.  Like for like repairs will also ensure diversity and important regional differences are also conserved.  
  • There is still so much we can learn from the past but CJC is not afraid to alter or improve when there is a history of failure that  risks a buildings future.  Innovation should preferable be limited to low risk areas however where such work can be monitored and reversed.  
  • CJC firmly believes that new buildings should be clearly of their time with the difference between old and new celebrated.  Sensitivity can be achieved without making something look older than it is. 

Pembroke Design Ltd - Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire & Carmarthen, Carmarthenshire

Aqueduct at Ystalyfera (scheduled ancient monument and grade 2*)

Scheduled monument consent for new hydro electric scheme

Carew Castle (scheduled ancient monument, grade 1, site of special scientific interest, special area of conservation, historic landscape, national park)

Replacement roof, windows and doors to the Lesser Hall.  New build visitor centre within the walled garden

Cilgerran Castle (scheduled ancient monument and grade 1)     

Heritage impact assessment of options to protect wall heads

Customs house and bonded stores, Milford Haven (grade 2*, conservation area)

Listed building consent for stone repairs, lime rendering and new means of escape

Gwaunfa, Newport (grade 2, conservation area)

Repairs to house with new garden loggia building and landscaping

Llandeilo Market (grade 2, conservation area)

Condition survey and heritage impact assessment for change of use

Parkydrissi, Carmarthen (conservation area)

Statutory consents to convert outhouse and extend arts and crafts style dwelling

14 Picton Place, Haverfordwest (conservation area)

Conservation and extension into commercial and residential use

Slebech Park (scheduled ancient monument, grade 2*, historic landscape, site of special scientific interest, special area of conservation, national park, tree preservation orders)

Conservation plan and heritage impact assessment for additional hotel and restaurant facilities 

St Peter's House, Steynton (grade 2)

Statutory consents to covert outbuildings into residential use

Various sites in Haverfordwest, Milford Haven & Pembroke Dock (conservation areas)

Change of use and refurbishment of residential and commercial properties funded through the Group Repair Schemes and Townscape Heritage Initiatives

Bethany Church, Pembroke Dock (conservation area)

Statutory consents and tendering for scheme to re-roof, replace windows, introduce photovoltaics and improve toilets internally

Carreg Cennen Castle (scheduled ancient monument, grade 1, local nature reserve, site of special scientific interest, national park)

Replacement footbridges and guard rails

Coach House, Camrose (curtilage to grade 2)

Emergency repairs to stonework and roof

Dinefwr Home Farm, Llandeilo (grade 2, conservation area)

Conversion of former cow house/stable and cart shed into the Traditional and Sustainable Centre with offices and workshops

2-6 High Street, Haverfordwest (grade 2*, conservation area)

Listed building consent for conversion into flats

Llwynhelyg, Llandeilo (grade 2)

Listed building consent to convert stable and coach house into dwelling

Pembroke Castle (scheduled ancient monument, grade 1, conservation area)

New cafe extension within the inner ward and internal works to St Anne's Bastion to create new display tableau

28 Quay Street, Carmarthen (grade 2, conservation area)

Condition survey, statutory consents and drawings for refurbishment

18 Spilman Street, Carmarthen (grade 2, conservation area)

Listed building consent for re-roofing  C19th terraced offices

Treclover, Newport

Conservation statement for pre-application to covert former hammel into holiday let

Woodstock Calvanistic Methodist Church (grade 2)

Re-roofing following successful application to the Listed Places of Worship Roof Repair Fund

Chapel at Box Cemetery, Llanelli

Condition survey and refurbishment 

which included new windows and stone repairs 

Castlemartin range (scheduled ancient monument, grade 2, 2* and 1, national park)

Quinquennial inspection of a number of buildings including chapels, lime kiln, farm buildings and ruinous medieval houses  

Cucumber cottage, Clarbeston Road (grade 2)

Listed building consent to demolish and rebuild  C19th cottage  

Ffrwdwen Mill, Llandysul 

Planning permission to convert into residential and commercial use

56 Lammas Street, Camarthen (conservation area)

Conversion of house into opticians

Maindy Barracks, Cardiff & Beachley barracks, Newport (grade 2)

Quinquennial inspection of C19th barracks and walled enclosure, former church school house and war memorials

Picton Home Farm, Haverfordwest (grade 2*, national park, tree preservation orders)

Conversion of model Georgian farmstead into eight residential units

Quay Stores, Milford Haven (grade 2*, conservation area)

Retrospective listed building consent application for lime re-rendering 

Stepaside Heritage Park, Amroth (scheduled ancient monument and grade 2, national park)

Consolidation works to a dozen industrial monuments and improvements to footpaths

Upper Hill Farmhouse, Wiston

Full refurbishment including thermal improvement, extension and ground source heat pump installation

Pembrokeshire County Council - Milford Haven, Pembrokeshire

Market Hall, Fishguard (grade 2, conservation area)

Condition survey



Tenby Harbour (various including grade 2*, conservation area)

Condition survey of group of buildings from C19th warehouses, life boat station and various commercial premises along the beach and squeezed under sea defences 

Mosedale Gillat Architects - Gateshead & Newcastle

Bolam Coyne, Newcastle (grade 2)

Condition survey of 17 dwellings on the Byker Estate      

Netherwitton Hall, Morpeth (grade 1)

Replacement lead roof and repairs to chimneys

Bradley Hall, Wolsingham (scheduled ancient monument)

Consolidation of ruinous masonry and soft capping to wall heads

St Peters Wharf, Newcastle (grade 2)

Conversion of former warehouse into flats

Cleadon Tower Pumping Station, South Shields (grade 2)  

Condition survey

Well Strand, Rothbury (conservation area)

New build residential development 

Smiths Gore Chartered Surveyors - Hexham, Northumberland

Chipchase Castle, Hexham (grade 1)

Repointing and repairs to slate flag roof to the pele tower



Estate management (various)

Condition surveys, repairs, conversion and refurbishment to numerous cottages, farm buildings and country houses

Holystone Farm, Morpeth (grade 2, national park) 

Dealing with enforcement issues relating to farmhouse and successful planning application to convert series of outbuildings into residential use

Frans Nicholas Architects - Neyland & Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire

15 Albany Terrace, Haverfordwest (conservation area)

Conversion of stable into office

St Anne's Church, New Hedges (grade 2)

Research into conservation options for corrugated tin as part of grant application to Heritage Lottery Fund 

18 Goat Street, Haverfordwest  (grade 2)  

Re-roofing and carpentry repairs following dry rot outbreak

Rock House, Haverfordwest  (grade 2*, conservation area)

Listed building consent to erect salvaged iron Victorian green house. Re-rending in lime putty

Albany Church, Haverfordwest (grade 2, conservation area)

Rendering in hydraulic lime with tromp lieu paint effect and new window hood moulds

Cresselly House, Pembrokeshire (grade 2*, national park)

Re-roofing with new rainwater goods and leadwork, rebuilding of chimneys, internal repairs and improvements to ventilation from long standing dry rot attacks 

Liberal Hall, Club, Haverfordwest  (grade 2)

Improvements to facade with new hard landscaping and redecoration

General ecclesiastical work (grade 2*)

Repairs, improvements and grant applications to following churches:

St Jeffery & St Oswald, Jeffreyston

St Michael, Rudbaxton

St Elidyr, Amroth

St Ishmael, St Ishmael

St Caradog, Lawrenny

St David Church, Hubberston

St Michael, New Moat

St Mary, Angle

St Andrew’s Church, Narberth (grade 2, conservation area)  

Repointing, plasterwork, improvements to tower, replacement leaded windows, repairs to ground drainage           

St Decumanus Church, Rhoscrowther  (grade 1)     

Repairs to roof following Texaco oil refinery explosion  

34-36 Market Street, Haverfordwest  (conservation area)

Repairs to shop front and repairs to roof following dry rot attack

Other work

The changing farm buildings of west Wales

Dissertation examining how five vernacular working farms have changed over the centuries and the influence of changing farming practices


Carreg Ddu, Whitland

Specification to restore thatched clom cottage



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