Natural Stone Awards 2010 - Ashridge Management College - Highly commended - Craftsmanship

The most challenging task to overcome on this project was the rebuilding of the facade ashlar from the roof line.  The fact that the original ashlar across the elevation was set on a curve had to be taken into account.  In the centre it had a 60mm variation with the sides.  We had to make sure that the first floor cill course was fixed in exactly the correct position to receive the new oak frames.  This was critical because the frames had to be fixed in the same position, which abut the interior wood panelling.  Once the parapet and string were removed from the Library Annex, the outer masonry had to be delicately removed back to the glass line, taking into account there was less than 200mm of original internal pier supporting each arch.  We had to remove and rebuild alternate half sole piers and buttresses to give as much support to the roof above as possible.  Once the whole elevation was dried we cleaned down to a smooth finish.  Lastly, a lime water was thoroughly applied.  The elevation now has a much imporved appearance and makes a fitting entrance to the library for one of the world's leading executive education centres. 

Judges comments:- "The mason has painstakingly removed the original bosses, mouldings and balusters, measured them and replicated them with new stone from the original quarry.  The work is sharp, defined and extremely well executed down to the smallest detail.  The carvings are mounted on the refurbished screen with care.  The standard of craftsmanship is exceptionally high and the contractor should be congratulated for demonstrating that the craft of masonry is alive and well."

 

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