Ask an Expert

Our Ask an Expert Zone is hosted by the National Self Build and Renovation Centre (NSBRC)

Ask an Expert is an ideal opportunity to bring along your plans and discuss them with a range of consultants and specialists. A booking system will operate with slots to be booked on a first-come, first-served basis at the Show so head along to the booking desk in the Ask an Expert area as soon as you arrive at the Show to reserve your slot.

Seek expertise in the following specialist areas at the Show:


    Robin Batchelder from The National Self Build & Renovation Centre has a long background in construction and is an experienced project manager, specialising in self builds. Robin focuses on ensuring self builders get the home they want, rather than a builder’s interpretation of their designs, and ensuring people get the best out of their budget


    Sue Dewhirst of Evolved Design has been involved in the construction industry for over 30 years with expertise in Modern Methods of Construction and Passivhaus design, including 10 years with one of the UK's major insulation manufacturers as Technical Sales Manager. Sue is a Green Team expert at The National Self Build & Renovation Centre at Swindon and specialises in Low Energy / Passivhaus Homes using a range of building systems. Evolved Design are chartered Architectural Technologists, Passivhaus Designers & Energy Assessors covering England & Wales.


    Chris Dewhirst of Evolved Design has been involved in the building industry for over 40 years and been in a technical development role for many major companies in both Insulation Materials, Concrete Products and Building System Manufactures markets. Chris specialises in the development of New Build project, Offsite Building Systems and Renovation Project, in all aspects of the related work involved.


    Dave Ross and Dave Berrill join the Ask an Expert area from jhai Ltd. As one of the UK’s leading Approved Inspectors, jhai provides an unrivalled Building Regulations Approval service to small scale domestic developers, self-builders and homeowners. Jhai has processed over 65,000 Building Control applications in the last five years. Bring your plans and speak to Dave Ross (Saturday) and Dave Berrill (Sunday) about the best method to getting your plans approved. They can also advise you on the range of Additional Services including Energy Assessments and structural warranties.


    Ray Vince has completed several renovation and extension projects in the past seven years and now, after his first ‘new eco-build’ in 2015 which was a regional finalist for the LABC Building Excellence Awards 2016, helps other self builders in showing them what is possible. Ray’s eco-advisory service gives independent technical advice to develop your eco-specification and supports you with your chosen eco-package for an energy efficient home. Ray will be on hand to advise and help you reach your full potential in completing a unique and individual eco project.


    Paul Hutchings - PDG Architects Ltd

    Paul Hutchings, is a Chartered Architect with over 20 years experience of professional practice. As well as working with domestic clients on house renovation, extension and self build projects, PDG Architects undertakes a wide range of projects including new build housing, renovation of churches and refurbishment of offices.

    They have built a reputation of providing a personal, efficient and quality service to clients regardless of the size or nature of the project. Paul remains very project focused and has the skills and abilities to work closely with clients to help them realise successful schemes. He has developed a particular expertise in sensitive design, refurbishing and extending traditional buildings often situated in Conservation Areas.

    Stuart Le Sage - Le Sage Associates Ltd

    Le Sage Associates are a small RIBA Chartered Practice offering a full range of Architectural Services serving both commercial and domestic clients, regionally and locally. A wide range of domestic projects are undertaken, from complicated basement projects in Kensington to more modest kitchen & garden room extensions - all designed to deliver the architectural “wow factor” that clients seek when employing an Architect.

    Peter Hand – Jefferson Sheard

    For almost 60 years Jefferson Sheard have been honing their expertise in architecture by exploring and understanding project needs before bringing crafted thinking and clever creativity to bear on projects of all sizes. Their work balances form and function; technically excellent and design conscious in equal measure.

    The team at the Peterborough office possess extensive skills in traditional construction and conservation and have a varied portfolio of residential, industrial, commercial and leisure projects. Their services include; conservation and restoration, full architectural service, specialist design, drawing services, building maintenance, planning advice, principal designer, surveying, project management, exhibition design, space planning, FFE (furniture, fixtures and equipment) and interior design.