repair work to fireplace and hearth

Sob story... My (soon to be ex-) wife 'accidentally' got builders to smash up the fireplace and hearth in a small property I own which I have never been to, in a remote part of Scotland. Now she has got a local bloke to restore it off the cards. His work has involved remaking the fireback and, together with someone else, remaking a hearth. As far as I know, he has no experience in this kind of work, although he does a bit of roughcasting, and I was somewhat surprised to hear that he made the screed block constituting the hearth in separate 'coats', including a 'scratch coat'. I was also surprised that the timber formwork for the hearth has been left in place and is supposed to be a decorative surround. It is of course at the same height as the hearth, and the floor surrounding it is made of crappy chipboard. By 'hearth', I mean the horizontal rectangular block in front of the chimney breast.
Two questions - I know the tax position, but do I need to notify this work under the building regulations? There has been no change of use; there has just been a repair, but this has involved the rebuilding of the fireback and hearth, use of a jackhammer, and some work which clearly does need to be done competently for safety reasons.
Second question - a timber surround for a hearth? By this I don't mean some timber on the chimney breast, but the horizontal formwork surrounding the rectangular hearth block in front of the fireplace. This has been left in place and is supposed to be the final surround. Timber sounds to me like a stupid material for this - I can't recall encountering it before anywhere else as a hearth surround - but I am not sure, and maybe it's OK? After all, looked at from the top the timber just separates the non-combustible screed from the combustible carpet and floorboard. I am assuming it is at least the regulation distance from the fireplace, which I think is 500mm?
I realise I need to have a look, but am just asking for some preliminary advice!
Thanks in advance for any help with this!
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