Haddonstone stars in 19th century church restoration

A two-year project to repair and extend a popular Greek Orthodox church in Hertfordshire has involved a variety of traditional trade skills and conservation techniques, as well as the sourcing of materials to match the style of the existing structure. As the consultants and contractors navigated planning and practical considerations, Haddonstone, managed the design and manufacture of bespoke dry cast enrichments.

The Twelve Apostles Church in Brookmans Park serves a thriving congregation and local community whose diverse needs had put pressure on the existing facilities, inspiring church leaders to raise funds for a substantial extension in keeping with the building’s history. This led to Letchworth-based MP Building Ltd being appointed as principal contractor, while GLA Architecture and Design Ltd was responsible for obtaining planning permission and leading the design work.

The £1m scheme echoes the style of the 19th century building with a structural steel frame enclosed behind blockwork and brickwork, plus traditional napped flint walling and steeply pitched, clay plain tile roof. The cast stone elements frame the main door and three different style windows, while the roof gables feature quoins and sculpted apex stones.

MP Building`s Contract`s Manager, Alex Simpson explains:

“I had used Haddonstone before and was already on the company’s supplier data base so when it was decided move from a natural stone, to be casted in a semi dry material. Haddonstone sales team made clear what the characteristics and benefits of the two options – wet cast and dry cast – were the GLA Architecture and Design Ltd to make the best choice. They then went through a process of providing samples so that we could match the colour on site, while we had to add in our special pre-formed lintels onto the architects’ drawings so that the CAD drawings could be produced for sign off and the manufacture of the stone. The quality of the components was very good and we brought in an experienced stone mason to install all of the different components, so that the finished work matches the client’s expectations.”

All produced using Haddonstone’s widely specified semi dry mix in the bath stone colour, the window surrounds are up to 4m in height with traditional gabled arch heads, while the main entrance doorway measures 3.6m tall by 2.3m wide. All of the surrounds feature a distinctive decorative profile with a series of three bevels. Then the quoins for the gable ends were produced with a 470 rake to their top face, while they reduced in size from 700 x 350mm at the eaves to 617 x 350mm at the apex.

A spokesperson for the Twelve Apostles Greek Orthodox Church adds:

“The new building for our church, with the blessing of His Eminence Archbishop Nikitas of Thyateira & Great Britain, is by far the most significant project our small community of The Twelve Apostles in Brookmans Park has ever undertaken. It will be a lasting legacy, providing facilities for our young children, youth, and senior citizens. The new building provides safe accommodation for our Sunday school, a facility for adult baptisms and storage for our thriving food bank which continues to support hundreds of local families.”

Haddonstone is a founder member of the UK Cast Stone Association whose portfolio encompasses a wide selection of traditional, classical and contemporary designs to suit virtually any setting, and therefore all types of commercial as well as residential development. The members of its building and construction team combine more than 100 years of experience while the craftspeople in its workshops can produce moulds to fulfil virtually any bespoke order.

For further information visit www.haddonstone.com or call 01604 770 711.