All posts by Kate Gunner

Listed House Renovation

Summary = A listed house renovation and remodeling

Bakers recently completed phase one of remodeling and refurbishment works to this early 16th century Grade II Listed house, whilst the family remained living in the property.

Works included internal remodeling, extensive new electrical and mechanical installation, joinery, ceiling and wall repairs, new cornices, decorating and some external works.

The ground floor was replaced with an insulated limecrete floor and finished with limestone flagstones. New timber paneling was fitted to some areas all fireplaces and surrounds were refurbished. Repointing was carried out to the inner fireplaces and a timber fireplaces with marble slips were installed to some fireplaces.

Most walls were replastered with haired lime and quirked beaded corners installed. Redecoration was carried out throughout the property.

All plumbing and heating system was installed with new period radiators throughout the property. Period sanitary ware was installed to three bathrooms. A completely new electrical system was installed.

Bakers’ in-house joinery workshop manufactured a number of bespoke fitted furnishings for the kitchen and some replica intenal doors to match the existing.

Externally, Kien render and paint (breathable mineral based render and paint) was applied and all timber box frame sash windows were refurbished.

Bakers Accredited Training Programme

We are actively helping to reduce the skills shortage within the construction industry, in particular the heritage sector, by creating two new places on our Bakers Accredited Training Programme.

Bakers Accredited Training Programme

Our 18 month internal training programme is built around an onsite based NVQ, together with externally accredited in-house training modules. Our onsite, externally assessed training programme will enable the trainees to become qualified and skilled Heritage Building Craftsmen.

Working within our Church Works department, the Trainee Heritage Building Craftsmen will carry out a variety of conservation and restoration projects on churches, cathedrals and ancient buildings. On successful completion of the accredited training programme the trainees will have a varied and valuable skill set, and will continue to work on many interesting church projects with the opportunity for subsequent training and internal promotion.

If you would like to register your interest, please email info@bakersofdanbury.co.uk or apply in writing to: Managing Director, Bakers of Danbury Ltd, Eves Corner, Danbury, Essex CM3 4QB.

To view all of the vacancies Bakers of Danbury and its Sister Companies have visit our Vacancies Page

A Christmas Tree for Danbury

As part of our continued investment to support our local community, in Bakers of Danbury donated a large Christmas tree to the village of Danbury again.

The community of Danbury enjoyed a Christmas event hosted by Danbury Parish Council for the whole village to enjoy, on the evening of Monday 6th December. As the event is becoming more popular every year, it was attended by record numbers again, according to the Parish Council Chairman Stuart Berlyn.

After the count down, Father Christmas switched on the Christmas tree lights and everyone enjoyed singing along to traditional Christmas carols, accompanied by the wonderful Salvation Army Band and the Choir from St Johns C of E Primary School.

After the carols were sung, everyone enjoyed warm refreshments and treats at Danbury Sports and Social Centre and the children of Danbury were delighted to meet Father Christmas.

Cllr Stuart Berlyn, Chairman of Danbury Parish Council said:

From not being able to hold an event last year to tonight’s magical ‘turning on’ of the lights by ‘Father Christmas’ – the children had a fantastic time and thoroughly enjoyed it. Many thanks to all who contributed to our village event. Happy Christmas to one and all"

You can keep up-to-date with other initiatives within Baker's Corporate Social Responsibility Programme, which we set up to help support both our local community and the communities in which we work by visiting our Corporate Social Responsibility Page or by liking our Facebook page!

Danbury & Bicknacre FC Sponsorship

Bakers of Danbury are proud to sponsor the Danbury and Bicknacre FC under 11s team, who were recently promoted to the first division of the Blackwater and Dengie Youth Football League.

We actively support our local community and the communities in which we work. Run by volunteers, Danbury and Bicknacre FC is a local community football club that provides training and playing opportunities for boys and girls aged between 7 and 16.

To visit the Danbury and Bicknacre FC Facebook page click here.

You can keep up-to-date with other initiatives within Baker's Corporate Social Responsibility Programme, which we set up to help support both our local community and the communities in which we work by visiting our Corporate Social Responsibility Page or by liking our Facebook page!

Bakers Featured in Listed Heritage Mag

Listed Heritage, the membership journal of the Listed Property Owners’ Club has featured one of Bakers of Danbury’s latest projects in its latest magazine.

The November/ December 2021 issue of the Listed Heritage looks at the interesting conservation project recently carried out by Bakers of Danbury Ltd, which involved stone conservation on a private property in Royston. Works included replacement stone quoins, window jambs, surrounds, lintels and window sills where the existing stone had deteriorated beyond repair.

To ensure the new replacement stone matched the existing, Collins and Curtis Masonry Ltd carefully selected Tottenhoe Clunch directly from the quarry and Bakers’ craftsmen measured and made templates of the individual stones which needed to be replaced.

You can find on page 98 by clicking here.

Highly Commended: The King of Prussia Award 2021

We are delighted to announce that our recent conservation and repair project on the west façade of St Leonard's Church in Shoreditch has received The King of Prussia, Highly Commended at the prestigious EASA & National Churches Trust UK Church Architecture Awards.

The award was presented by Nicholas Von Preussen, Prince Nicholas of Prussia. It was collected by Sarah Khan, Partner at Roger Mears Architects and Adrian Ward Contract Manager for Bakers of Danbury Limited.

To read about the conservation and repair works to St Leonard’s Church which included the repair and strengthening of the front portico click here.

King John School, Benfleet

Summary = A school refurbishment and new build classroom extension at The King John School and Sixth Form

Value = £1,448,000

Location = Benfleet, Essex

Challenge = The new extension was an infill within an existing courtyard where there was previously a swimming pool, so the challenge was digging the foundations and laying the concrete in the limited space available.

Solution = The 42 week refurbishment and new build extension project consisted of two phases with individual projection completion and sign off dates for handover. Both phases were completed to deadline and within contract sum.

Phase one was handed over at the end of August 2021, ready for the new academic year. Works consisted of the refurbishment of the dining hall, lobby, corridors, foyer rooms and two maths classrooms. Inlay grid system suspended ceilings were installed to replace the existing ceilings. The partition walls installed included a 92mm c-section metal stud partition with 100mm insulation inside, 18mm ply and two layers of 12.5mm sound block plasterboard, finished with a plaster skim and decoration. New dado trunking, doors and skirting were installed together with new electrics and data throughout. New carpet tiles were laid within the two maths classrooms and vinyl flooring was installed to the dining hall, foyer and corridors.

Phase two was handed over in time for the second half of the Autumn Term (1st November 2021). Works consisted of the newly constructed infill extension constructed out of metal stud partition (including external walls). It consisted of two drama studios and two additional classrooms. Phase two also involved the full redecoration of three meeting rooms. The two new classrooms and three meeting rooms had carpet tiles laid to match the existing and new vinyl flooring was laid within the two drama studios. Inlay grid system ceilings were installed to the new extension and meeting rooms and plasterboard MF suspended ceilings were installed within the two drama studios.

A full design and build M&E package worth £400,000 included mechanical heat recovery units throughout, air conditioning units installed in the dining hall, new electrics, data and socket points, fire alarm and security alarm upgrade.

To prevent the risk of spreading Covid-19, Bakers implemented a risk assessment to ensure social distancing and other measures were implemented . Throughout the project, monthly progress review meetings have been taking place remotely with Bakers' Contract Manager and Site Manager, Architect, Zenith Multi Academy Trust and the school.

The final cost of the project was within the contract sum.

The Africa Trust

Bakers of Danbury are delighted that a new water pump is currently being installed in Africa on our behalf. It will be a much-needed source of clean and fresh drinking water for many.

By sourcing our watercoolers from AquAid it has given Bakers of Danbury the opportunity to help those less fortunate than ourselves, because with each purchase we make, a donation is made toThe Africa Trust. The donations collected are used to build ‘Elephant Pumps’ - a modified version of an age old Chinese rope pulley system.

To date AquAid have built over 8,000 such Elephant Pumps across parts of Liberia, Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe; and have donated in excess of £17 million to charity.

Shortlisted: The King of Prussia Gold Medal

We are delighted to announce that our recent conservation and repair project on the west façade of St Leonard's Church in Shoreditch has been shortlisted for the prestigious EASA & National Churches Trust The King of Prussia Gold Medal. The project was recently Commended in the Heritage and Restoration Category of the Hackney Design Awards 2020.

The judges for Hackney Design Awards said;

“The careful and conservative repair to the west façade of this Grade I listed church is highly commended by the judge as a great example of the “touch lightly” approach to historic building conservation.”

It was reported that the judges were impressed by the amount of original material that the project team were able to retain by their painstaking process or investigation and design of repairs.

To read about the conservation and repair works to St Leonard’s Church which included the repair and strengthening of the front portico click here.

The EASA and National Churches Trust The King of Prussia Gold Medal is due to be announced at the beginning of November 2021

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St Leonard’s Church, Shoreditch

Summary = Conservation and repair works to St Leonard’s Church, Shoreditch which included the repair and strengthening of the front portico, steeple and clocks.

Location = Shoreditch, London.

Challenge = Victorian alterations has compromised the church's structural integrity.

Solution = St Leonard's Church in Shoreditch is a Grade I listed church constructed in brick with a Portland stone façade and dressings, and slate roofs. Built in 1740, it is one of the oldest buildings in Shoreditch and is well known for its tall steeple.

Alterations made to the church by the Victorians left its structural integrity compromised. The church also suffered war damage and later was placed on the Historic England's Heritage at Risk Register. Since the 1990’s various works have been carried out to rebuild the church closer to its original form and rectify problems caused by Victorian alterations and war damage.

In 2016 Bakers installed a new slate roof to the north and south aisles and nave. Roof works included carpentry repairs, repairs and replacement of the cast iron rainwater goods, leadwork, masonry repairs and redecoration.

In 2019 Bakers carried out further conservation and repair works to St Leonard’s Church which included the repair and strengthening of the front portico, 192 ft steeple and clocks.

Restoration to the front portico which sits on the west façade was necessary due to water penetration caused by blocked roof outlets, which had led to the rusting of previous iron repairs, and in turn caused the portico stonework to spall and crack. A new Portico roof was installed with copings and new lead gutters and flashings. Other repairs carried out to the rest of the west façade included stone cleaning and repairs which were made to the clock level. Where stone indents were found to be beyond repair, Bakers’ sister company Collins and Curtis Masonry Ltd templated, cut and profiled replacement stone indents in Portland Stone to match the existing. The clocks were repaired and restored by specialists, back to their former glory.

In October 2019 a SPAB Repair of Old Buildings Course visited site at St Leonard's Church to view the restoration and repair works taking place and take part in a Q&A session with Roger Meers Architects, Bakers of Danbury’s skilled craftsmen, and Thwaits & Reed, the clockmakers who were refurbishing the clock at the time.

Works carried out over the years has helped preserve St Leonards Church for future generations and finally as a result of recent conservation works, St Leonard’s Church was recently removed from Historic England's Heritage at Risk register.

The conservation and repair project at St Leonard's Church has received King of Prussia, Highly Commended at the prestigious EASA & National Churches Trust UK Church Architecture Awards as well as Commended in the Heritage and Restoration Category of the Hackney Design Awards 2020. The judges at the Hackney Design Awards 2020 said;

“The careful and conservative repair to the west façade of this Grade I listed church is highly commended by the judge as a great example of the “touch lightly” approach to historic building conservation.”

It was reported that the judges were impressed by the amount of original material that the project team were able to retain by their painstaking process or investigation and design of repairs.