Stephen is a Chartered Building Surveyor and a Fire and Building Defects Expert. He is Managing and founding Director of Sharp & Bentley, who provide a full range of architectural and building surveying services. He provides specialist Expert advice on fire risk management, access for people with disabilities and general disrepair matters and has done so for over 30 years.
I work along side a range of other Experts such as Chartered Mechanical & Electrical Engineers, Chartered Quantity Surveyors (Quantum Experts), Structural Glazing Engineers and many others. These Experts can either work by direct appointment or via Sharp & Bentley, where required.
FIRE EXPERT RELATED PROJECTS
External Cladding, Render & Compartmentation
• Investigating potential claims for incorrect use of cladding materials used in High Risk Residential Buildings (Residential Apartment Buildings, Student Accommodation) for both developers and occupiers.
• Inspection and report of external render and cladding systems of a High Rise (28 + Storeys) with mixed use. Commercial on ground and restaurant on the upper floors on multiple buildings with 100+ apartments, retail stores and underground multi-level car parking.
• Evaluate remedial solutions and assist the contractors in finding economic solutions.
• Monitoring the removal of cladding and other materials and providing advice on materials found and method of operation for developers.
• Dec 2016: Mr Mehmet was the Fire Expert on a £21.0 million claim that was settled at mediation (confidential settlement figure agreed), in favour of his client in respect of poor and inadequate compartmentation within a Residential High Risk Building for a large volume housing association. Part of his remit was to assist the design team in providing cost effective design solutions for the remedial works. Stephen assisted in the selection of contractors at tender evaluation. He also inspected the remedial works.
Specialist Care Homes
• Inspection and report on compartmentation defects within residential Care homes. Provide recommendation on the remedial works.
Church Buildings & Ancillary Halls
• Carrying out scheme reviews and fire risk assessments
Government Buildings (HMCS / HMTS and Public Buildings)
• Undertaking Fire Risk Assessments and intrusive inspections to voids/concealed spaces and report on compartmentation.
Other Buildings / Services
• Building inspections of common parts of apartment blocks providing pre-purchase advise on compartmentation.
Building Defects - Equalities Act
• Our client was successful in a claim supported by me against a hotel for failure to provide access to services.
• Building defects claims for housing disrepair for and against private and social landlords.
• Building defects analysis for homeowners against national house builders in London & the home counties.
• Specialist inspections and reports on alleged defective construction (Contract Disputes).
Prior to starting Sharp & Bentley, he was a Partner for a medium sized multi disciplinary firm of Architects and Chartered Surveyors, Head of Building Surveying for a small Chartered Surveying Practice providing both managerial and practical “hands on” advice, which included Fire risk management and design.
Stephen has experience in site inspection, disability design (Equality Act), project management and design, etc. His fire consultant experience enhanced his extensive and detailed knowledge of building contracts, construction management and design. He also has expertise in “work place assessments” for means of escape purposes of registered blind, hearing impaired, wheelchair users, amputees and those with cognizant impairments.
A thorough and logical approach to design, investigation, analyzing problems and proposals is one of Stephen’s strengths. This enables him to provide sound advice based on facts, which is underpinned by not just being “Fire Consultant” but by being a “Construction Professional” backed by over 35 years of practical experience.
Since the early, 1990’s Stephen has carried out many Fire Risk Assessments of various building types and with a variety of uses, including public and commercial buildings, retail and domestic properties. In more recent years, he was specifically requested to investigate and comment on Grade 2 Star listed buildings including temporary accommodation for the judiciary.
Within the past few years Stephen has been appointed as an Expert and was responsible for identifying the defects and commenting on Contractual obligations. He was further appointed to ensure the correct use of materials and placement of fire stopping forming compartmentation in new and occupied apartments on schemes totaling more than 400 homes. He was also responsible for inspecting the reinstatement works of over 200 apartments within one complex.
Stephen was invited by the RICS and took part as a panel member for a “Question Time” style debate titled “ask the experts”, relating to building design and means of escape within apartment buildings.
Stephen has read and understands Part 35 of the Civil Procedures Rules and is fully aware of his obligations. He has read and understood the accompanying practice directions, Practice Direction Pre-Action Conduct, Protocol for the Instruction of Experts to give Evidence in Civil Claims and he complies with those requirements.
Areas of Expertise
Fire Compartmentation Investigations
Fire Protection / Risk management / Assessments
Architectural Design (New build, Extension, Conversions, etc.)
Planning & Building Regulations Applications
Party Wall Matters & Boundary Disputes
Site Inspector (Clerk of Works)
CDM 2015 (Designer and Advisor)
Fire Risk Assessments
Equality Act 2010 - Access Audits / Project reviews
Work Place Assessments (Access Audits / FRA)
Preparation of Specifications for Repairs or Refurbishments
Chartered Building Surveyor & Fire Consultant
Health & Safety
Disability Access Consultant
Party Wall Matters
Conservation of Buildings