History of the Firm

Drake & Kannemeyer LLP was established as a firm of Chartered Surveyors in 1980 founded by Brian Drake, who sadly passed away in 2019 at the age of 88, and Ted Kannemeyer who remains an active Partner. Brian Drake was the Chief Quantity Surveyor and Under Secretary at the Department of Health and he co-founded Drake & Kannemeyer in 1980. He remained Director of the BCIS and served on the RICS QS Committee for many years. Ted Kannemeyer was the Project Manager for St Catherine's Dock development in London and had an extensive background as a Developer in London. The firm has established a reputation for the provision of quality professional estate services to Central and Local Government Departments, Health Trusts, Universities, Colleges, Private Schools, Charities and other property owners.

Brian Drake & Ted Kannemeyer 1980


From the earliest date the firm has been involved in the evaluation of estates for their condition, development potential, maintenance and management. The partners developed possibly the first computer operated method for recording the condition of large multi-building estates and analysis of the survey results. Their foresight and innovative approach resulted in the development of grading methodology and elemental lists against which multi-building estates were appraised. The grading system was that which is now commonly used in most public sector condition survey commissions. The structure and format of these early elemental listings are still in use today demonstrating the founding Partners foresight into future estate management requirements.


The firm has established specialist survey and appraisal techniques and software for assessing and reporting on Building Condition, Statutory Compliance, Space Utilisation, Functional Suitability, Energy and other bespoke requirements. Systems and methodologies have been published by RICS BMI in Special Reports 167:1988 and 249:1996.

In 1988 the firm was commissioned by the University Funding Council to carry out the first pilot survey of eight UK civic universities and in 1992 the firm’s joint venture company KDK Ltd carried out the first national survey of all UK civic universities. Other national survey commissions carried out by the firm have included Government Science and Research Council Estates, Special Hospitals Estate, States of Jersey Public Buildings Estate, Royal Horticultural Society Estate and several Regional Health and other estates.

Drake & Kannemeyer’s systems have been tried and tested and proven to be robust across possibly the most diverse range of buildings and estates that any private practice could conceivably come across. Not content with their early development the systems have continued to be developed with many innovations leading the market place in order to provide estate owners with an effective method of evaluating status of their property portfolio. The firm introduced 10 year programming and business prioritising of work programmes, methodology for risk assessment of deficiencies and benchmarking analysis many of which are now taken for granted as forming part of estate data analysis.

Drake & Kannemeyer have provided a wide range of services since the early 1980s from general professional advice, architectural and project services, quantity surveying, development strategies and more recently disability audits, party wall, listed building and conservation advice. The firm has a long track record in health estate and education projects specifically in remodelling and re-use of assets. Project services provided by the practice have been to a diverse range of buildings and sites. These range from a redevelopment of a hospital site to provide accommodation for patients with physical learning disability, development of new teaching blocks for colleges and private schools, conversion of a castle to a country house hotel, conversion and refurbishment of psychiatric acute in-patient areas and community mental health facilities.

Drake and Kannemeyer have provided traditional building surveying services to all clients. These services have included assisting in lease negotiation, advising on property acquisition and disposal, advising on potential development or rationalisation of estates, boundary problems and party wall awards.

The firm has continuously developed its standards of service and is proud of its record of providing good quality independent and professional services to all of its clients. The firm continues to work across the whole UK in respect of its estate surveys commissions and within the south east for projects and other professional services.