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Steepwood Bungalow, Adversane Lane, Billinghurst
West Sussex
United Kingdom



Where have we been?

Roland Locke

Hello to all those of you who are fortunate to own one of our nations wonderful,historic houses and those of you who dream of doing so.....we're back!

Over the last year (can it really be that long) I have had the privilege to work on some truly lovely homes, from a rambling, grade two star listed, moated manor set amid its own gorgeous gardens, to a cute, two up two down cottage perched next to a road. What amazes me, is that every historic building we work on has its own character and charm and of course its quirks. Uneven floors, no straight walls, low ceilings, to name but a few. Yet like the thousands of people, likewise under the spell of the history, in an old house. I never grow tired of the journey of discovery, that comes with the job.

One day we might be basking in tropical sunshine and the next, shivering as rain drips onto us, as we try to stay dry underneath a flapping tarpaulin. But we can honestly say....we love it! At the moment we are finishing off on one job, where we have made our largest window to date. An impressive 3.2 metres by 3.7. It looks fantastic and we are justly proud of our hard work! Then we are returning to the oldest house we have worked on so far....Built around 1400, it incredibly still has much of the original daub panels still intact, complete with smoke blackened hazel wattles., from when it was an open hall, with a fire in the centre of the floor!I I find it so fantastic, to consider the history which has gone on around this house in its six hundred year plus existence and it delights me see the history unfolding before my eyes as we work. 

Do I have broken finger nails and an aching back? AT the end of the day,do I mostly go home covered in lime mortar, brick dust or soot? The answer is yes of course I do. 

Would I change it for a regular job? No, I love my work! Who can say as I do, my work is a joy, a privilege and quite simply, the best job in the world.




Crondall mid smoke bay Cottage

Roland Locke

We are currently working on what I believe may be a late mid smoke bay house.

This cottage was I believe built towards the end of the smoke bay building period. The smoke bay was never used and in fact a chimney was inserted within the smoke bay.

we are currently working on the end gable structural timbers and panels where there is some fairly major deterioration of the timbers.

work on Shell bridge

Roland Locke

This design of this bridge has been attributed to Caperbility Brown however this is unconfirmed. But it was once owned by the world speed record holder Donald Cambell. 

The bridge was once set in formal grounds but now is surrounded by a wilderness and haven for wildlife. It spans a tributary of the River Mole in Leatherhead and joins two islands.

We have been doing some urgent repair work which include renewing one side of the bridges coping and brickwork repairs, all in lime mortar.

The work is complete now and it will be another 50 years before more maintenance is required.

All change!

Roland Locke

We have now completed the work to Shell Bridge in Leatherhead and Daniel moves onto re-point a chimney near Chichester.

We have now completed the work to the Wealden cottage in Hurstpierpoint and myself, Neil and Molly move on to work on a mid smokebay cottage in Crondall, Hampshire.