Andrew Mear is MD of San Pedro Properties, which owns and manages a number of redeveloped historical buildings.
How would you describe your home? My wife, Charlotte, and I live in a former Victorian church which I converted into a family home in 2006. It is a mix of both traditional and modern in terms of room settings and furnishings, with many rooms,including the grand hallway and the dining room, retaining all the original hallmarks of a church, with exposed timber and stonework. The lounge and main bedrooms have a more contemporary feel with modern furniture and our extensive collection of family photos.
What is on your interiors wish list and why? More Mouseman furniture. I would love to have an original dining suite made by Robert Thompson, the famous furniture maker from Kilburn. I love his life story, his wonderful handcrafted oak furniture and, of course, his famous mice.
Which household item could you not live without? A home is made by the family that live in it, but that said I really couldn’t live without the TV. I
am passionate about sport − in particular live sport − and am still actively involved with Old Brodleians RUFC at Hipperholme where I have been a member since I was 10 and Cleckheaton Golf Club which I joined when I was 12.
Which architects and designers do you most admire? Isambard Kingdom Brunel, who must be the greatest mechanical and civil engineer of the Victorian period, if not the greatest Briton since the industrial revolution. He accomplished an amazing amount of groundbreaking work in the 53 years of his life. Clifton Suspension Bridge across the River Avon, which he started when he was only 24, wasn’t completed until after his death, it being such a major feat of design and engineering. I also admire the work of Capability Brown who is probably one of the best known landscape architects and who produced an impressive portfolio of works which still influences the landscapes of many public places, including Harewood House.
What is your favourite building? St Paul’s Cathedral is not only an inspiring structure designed by Christopher Wren, but signifies an impressive feat of civil engineering. The unfinished cathedral actually started to sink during its construction due to its huge weight and the nature of its sand-based
foundations. Amazingly these immense issues were overcome to the extent that the building remains nearly architecturally and structurally perfect some 350 years on.
Is there anything exciting you at the minute in terms of design? The use of modern technologies to support the production of realistic planning and
architectural drawings, for instance the 3D printer is an amazing development and can really help to visualise a finished project.
Who would you most like to invite for dinner? Once upon a time I would have loved to have had dinner with Nick Faldo, the great British golfer. However these days I have a great admiration for Tiger Woods, who I believe to be the greatest golfer – ever. If he wins another major he will go down in history as the greatest player ever to have made a comeback following serious injury. Just to talk golf with him would be perfect.
*Andrew Mear is MD of San Pedro Properties, which owns and manages a number of redeveloped historical buildings.