Category Archives: Church Works

A set of recent Church works projects by Bakers of Danbury

St Catherine’s Church, East Tilbury

Value = £330,000

Location = East Tilbury, Essex

Architect =Inkpen Downie Architecture and Design Ltd

Summary = Sympathetic extension and redecoration.

Solution = Refurbishment and extension of church to provide new kitchen area and WC's including accessible WC. Provide new heating installation to both extension and church, along with full renovation of flooring, walls and roof to main church.

Photos credited to Inkpen Downie Architecture and Design Ltd

This project was recently Highly Commended at the Diocese of Chelmsford, Design Awards 2017 for Development and Restoration.

Chelmsford Cathedral

Value = £173,000

Location = Chelmsford Cathedral, Essex

Architect = Purcell UK - Simon Marks

Summary = Replacement of sand cast lead roof, including structural roof timber repairs, masonry works, internal plastering and redecoration.

Challenge = Works carried out to a very high standard of craftsmanship despite the inherent difficulties of working at a busy Cathedral with regular events requiring noise restrictions. Complex detailing of the new roof structure constructed over the existing roof trusses.

Solution = Intensive site management and close liaison with Cathedral staff and project team.

 

St Albans Cathedral

Value = £207,000

Location = The Cathedral and Abbey Church of St Alban (North Ambulatory, Transfiguration Chapel & South Cloister)

Architect = Richard Griffiths Architects

Summary = External stone conservation, replacement & repairs, repairs to leaded glazing and replacement sand cast lead roofing.

Challenge = Works were carried out to a very high standard of craftsmanship despite the inherent difficulties of working at a busy Cathedral with regular events requiring noise restrictions and nearby heavy pedestrian traffic within a town centre.

Solution = Intensive site management and close liaison with Cathedral staff & Local Authorities to ensure the works are undertaken safely and minimise inconvenience to the Client’s daily events within the Cathedral.

This project was recently awarded a RIBA East 2017 award and a RIBA East 2017 award for Conservation.

 

St Christopher’s Church

Value = £162,000

Location = Willingale, Essex

Architect = Simon Marks - Purcell

Summary = Restoration of church roof, including strengthening and alterations to meet modern regulations.

Challenge = Fitting a new compliant roof structure into the old C14th roof timbers without disturbing the original structure and pegged joints, or affecting the existing plaster and lath ceiling. Every new rafter had to be fitted bespoke, shaving millimetres off at various points along their lengths to allow it to fit in the roof space available.

Solution = Works included stripping tiles and battens and re-roofing using bat-friendly felt, batten and tiling with hand-made Tudor tiles. Carrying out timber repairs and strengthening to the roof structure. Installing secondary roof structure in softwood to meet modern regulations regarding rafter spacing. Adjusting and adapting rainwater goods to suit new roof.

Brentwood Cathedral

Location = Brentwood Cathedral

Client = Diocese of Brentwood

Summary = Internal decoration and cleaning of the high level gilding, stone columns and floors.

Challenge = High level internal access and protection of the organ whilst works carried out overhead.

Solution = Full bird cage scaffold erected to use when cleaning gilding and when decorating of the ceiling upper walls. External access provision for glazing contractor to replace the existing leaking lead lights in the cupola.

Fr Martin Boland, Dean of the Cathedral said:

"I would like to thank you again for the professionalism of Bakers of Danbury, for your personal advice and for all those who worked so hard, efficiently and to the highest standard."

The Charterhouse, London

Value = £2,100,000

Location = London, EC1M 6AN

Architect = Eric Parry Architects

Conservation Architect = Richard Griffiths Architects

Landscape Architect = Todd Longstaffe-Gowan

Project management = Jackson Coles

Summary = Having been hidden from view and closed to public for over 650 years - the Charterhouse, a historic London landmark recently underwent extensive remodelling and conservation before being formerly opened to public by the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh on 28th February 2017.

Challenge = The large conservation, restoration and alteration project “Revealing the Charterhouse” included remodelling of the Grade I listed building to house a new museum, learning centre, cafe, reception area and public toilets, as well as conservation and restoration works to the external fabric of Charterhouse Chapel and the re-design of Charterhouse Square.

Works took place whilst paying careful consideration to the Brothers who reside at the Charterhouse.

Solution = The recently completed £4 million project, “Revealing the Charterhouse” was funded through the Heritage Lottery Fund and other generous supporters. To ensure that the project was carried out to the highest standard, Bakers of Danbury were appointed Principal Contractors.

Ann Kenrick OBE, Master, the Charterhouse said:

“We are hugely grateful for the works carried out by Bakers of Danbury and for their unwavering dedication to the Revealing the Charterhouse project. The skilled craftsmen from Bakers work to an extremely high standard producing a finish which has exceeded all of our expectations. They were a pleasure to work with, always keeping to their word, and we couldn’t be happier with their overall approach and diligence.

I would recommend Bakers of Danbury to anyone."

REVEALING THE CHARTERHOUSE

The project “Revealing the Charterhouse” not only opens the Charterhouse to the general public, but as depicted by its name, has made the historic gem visible to passers-by, who otherwise may not have noticed the beautiful medieval buildings partially hiding behind a hedgerow. Bakers of Danbury replaced the hedges with new landscaping including entrance gates with the motto in old French “virtue is the only nobility”.

As a result of the new landscaping, as you approach Chapel Court (the entrance to Charterhouse) a beautiful path constructed of Scoutmoor Yorkstone will lead you through the entrance gates to the museum entrance - but before you proceed through the gates, at your feet you will find a feature stone with a brass inlay outlining the original footprint of the monastery.

Chosen for its durability; the slabs of the Scoutmoor Yorkstone pathway measure as large as 1500mm x 1500mm. Before the 63mm thick Yorkstone path could be laid, trial holes were made to Chapel Court and inspected by the Museum of London Archaeology team. To keep excavation to a minimum, the path was laid on a raised reinforced concrete base.

As you enter Chapel Court through the entrance gates, you will find a cast bronze model of the existing Charterhouse buildings. After the model was cast, it was sent away for patination – a decorative technique in which chemical solutions are applied to react with the surface, to provide a thin layer of coloured corrosion which gives an antique appearance.

The new landscaping to Chapel Court depicts the footprint of the original Chapel walls which was built in 1349 for the victims of the Black Death. It also gives pride of place to the new memorial of Sir Walter Manny – the monastery’s principle founder. The memorial marks the final resting place of Sir Walter Manny and is constructed of a beautiful Travertine tombstone, with base, plinth and eased arrises also of Travertine stone. On it is carved Sir Walter Manny, Died 1372.

CHARTERHOUSE CHAPEL

As part of the project, Bakers of Danbury carried out conservation and restoration works to the external fabric of the Chapel visible from Chapel Court. The extensive fabric repairs include stone cleaning and lime mortar repointing to the whole chapel and tower, as well as the traditional method of shelter coating to help preserve the softer friable stone. Where necessary Kentish Ragstone and Elm Park Bath stone supplied by Bakers of Danbury’s sister company Collins and Curtis Masonry sympathetically replaced stone which was beyond repair.

THE MUSEUM AND LEARNING CENTRE

The new reception area and learning centre are of a contemporary design with European Oak panelling and a painted plaster finish. A breathable silicate paint was used on existing solid walls, to prevent any moisture in the walls from causing ‘blistering’ and ‘bubbling’ of the paint.

As you enter the new reception area you will notice the impressive coffered ceiling, with indirect lighting within octagon recesses, which continues through the learning centre. The octagon coffered ceiling was designed to echo the octagon recess detail on the Chapel ceiling.

Bakers of Danbury carried out the base build for the new museum including climate control and secondary glazing. Bakers also relocated the sculpture representing Faith, Hope and Charity, to its new location looking over the museum.

CHARTERHOUSE SQUARE

As part of the project, Charterhouse Square was re-designed, inspired by its 18th century layout - this included the installation of gas lamps, a new pavilion, new benches and the refurbishment of the Grade II listed entrance gates and railings surrounding the square. The square has also been increased in size, by removing parking bays.

Quay Place, Ipswich, Suffolk

Value = £2,000,000

Location = Ipswich, Suffolk

Architect = Molyneux Kerr Architects

Summary = Regeneration of a Grade II Listed redundant medieval Church. New build extension and mezzanine floor of a contemporary design.

Challenge = The redundant church suffered from war damage, damp, a decayed roof and leaning walls.

Solution = Formerly the church of St Mary-at-the-Quay but now called Quay Place, was until its recent regeneration a redundant medieval Church.

The Grade II listed church which was believed to have been built around 1450 and 1550, is located next to Ipswich’s quayside. It suffered from war damage, damp, a decayed roof and leaning walls until the 17 month restoration programme gave Quay Place a new future as a centre for both heritage and well being activities, café and an event space alongside therapy provision.

The Churches Conservation Trust teamed up with the local charity Suffolk Mind, and together they secured Heritage Lottery Funds and European Regional Development Funds to cover the cost of the restoration. In April 2014 Bakers of Danbury started work on the project as Principal Contractor. The specialist restoration works include the structural stabilisation and incorporation of a large contemporary mezzanine floor for office space. A new contemporary design extension provides further offices and consulting rooms.

Bakers of Danbury's sister company Collins and Curtis Masonry supplied all new stone for the restoration and new build. Measurements were taken onsite to produce templates, which were then used to manufacture the replacement features to arches, jambs, tracery, cills and copings in their workshops. Traditional methods of masonry were used to manufacture the stone details.

The project was recently awarded a RICS East of England 2017 award for Building Conservation. It also received a Highly Commended Award within the Ipswich Society Awards in 2016.

All images credited to Andy Marshall Architectural Photography

Walden Castle, Essex

Location = Saffron Walden, Essex

Summary = Conservation works to a late Norman castle

Challenge = Protect the walls from thermal and moisture fluctuations.

Solution = Bakers of Danbury carried out conservation work to the impressive high flint walls of this late Norman castle which is listed as an Ancient Monument. Works involved the installation of a soft capping to protect the tops of the walls from deterioration.

We believe the soft capping installed at Walden Castle is the first of its kind in East Anglia. It comprises of low maintenance grass and other plants which were carefully pre-selected to protect the walls from thermal and moisture fluctuations.

St Paul’s Cathedral, London

Value = £750,000

Location = London EC4

Architect = Caroe Architecture

Summary = Refurbishment to part of the Crypt

Challenge = Works took place whilst the Cathedral remained open to the general public.

Solution = In 2016 Bakers of Danbury returned to St Paul’s Cathedral, London - this time to refurbish part of the Crypt. Throughout the works, Bakers worked closely with the Cathedral works team to ensure works took place whilst the Cathedral remained open to the general public.

This interesting project involved very careful excavation of the Crypt floor and close working with the Cathedral Archaeologist, to ensure that any remains found were reburied.

The extensive refurbishment works included a new layout and refurbishment to the public washrooms, a total refurbishment of the Mezzanine floor, old clay pamment tiles laid from the Crypt to the public washrooms and comprehensive modern LED lighting installed to the Crypt and Mezzanine floor.

St Brides, London

Value = £614,000

Location = Fleet Street London EC4

Architect = Tangram Architects

Summary = Tower/spire cleaning and restoration of stonework.

Challenge = Restricted access in the busy City of London.

Solution = The iconic Grade 1 Listed church is the tallest of Sir Christopher Wren’s churches at 67m high with its distinctive and famous tiered spire being the inspiration of the wedding cake. Standing for over 300 years the church has survived world wars, years of air pollution and erosion from detrimental weather, so it is no surprise that after years of numerous sections of masonry falling from the structure to the ground, that substantial restoration work was urgently required.

The initial phase of essential repairs to the Portland Stone tower & spire involved carefully cleaning the heavy carbon soiling, more than an inch thick in places, removal of all hard cement pointing and mortar repairs carried out in the 1950’s and repointing with lime mortar with around 350 new stone indents to the ashlar and moulded details.

Many of Wren’s original carved stones including the Corinthian style column capitals were replicated and fully replaced and many carved sections delicately repaired.

The unstable tower parapet & the eight 2m high ornate sculptured urns were reconstructed to remove Wren’s original rusting iron cram and replace them with stainless steel fixings. The tower & spire also benefited from new lead work to the tiered cornices of the spire to protect the masonry and improve weathering, a new lightning protection system and regilded weather vane.