Our latest project is a complete renovation on a grade 2 listed farmhouse. The images show soleplates, lime plastering, lime rendering and limecrete floor. A new kitchen will follow shortly. We will post more pictures as the job progresses!
We are starting our 'Meet the Team' blogs with none other than the founder of K.E. Jones & Son - Mr Kevin Jones! Kevin will be 70 this year and the business will also be celebrating its 50th birthday.
When Kevin left school he did an engineering apprenticeship but left the company when it finished, as he couldn't bear to be stuck indoors. He joined a local building firm in North London, and worked all over the area learning the building trade.
In 1972 he married his lovely wife, Sandra, and they moved to Wakes Colne which felt like the middle of nowhere after London! Kevin had been travelling back at weekends before the wedding to finish building their first home together. In 1975 the couple moved to Leavenheath. Sandra was pregnant with their first child, Danni, and they were living in a caravan while Kevin built their new home - not easy with a new baby!
Kevin has always been able to see the potential in property, and this is how he has moved forward over the years. Kevin is an extremely hard worker with 'old school' ethics, and has even been known to help out older customers at Christmas time without charging them. Although a very quiet, private man, he is very kind and will help anyone.
Kevin is father to 3, Danni, Ben and Will, and a much-loved grandad to 4 grandsons and 3 granddaughters. Although Kevin is now semi-retired having handed over the company reins to Ben, he is currently building two detached houses!
We are proud that we have worked with English Heritage on some of their projects. English Heritage look after over 400 historic buildings across the country, and obviously it is important to conserve and maintain these fantastic buildings in their original style, and using traditional building techniques. Find out more about the important work of English Heritage here.
One of our recent projects, before lockdown was a large loft-conversion on a 500-year-old farmhouse, whch was a very time consuming project.
The original timbers all had to be strengthened, lots of extra support had to be put into them as many were rotten.
The floor had to be lifted and the walls had to be insulated and plastered with lime plaster.
We think you will agree that the end result is stunning - another job well done!
As the Corona virus pandemic sweeps the country, we are following government guidelines and have stopped working for the safety of our customers and employees. However, we want to remind you that now is a good time to contact us to discuss future jobs. As we're all on lockdown, many of you are thinking about jobs that need doing at home, and if you're hoping to get building work done once this is all over, then we can help, whether its restoration, maintenance or a new build. We can't come and visit you to do quotes at the moment, but you can contact us via this link or on our Facebook page. We are happy to discuss your ideas and plans, and give you something positive to think about!
We are one of few companies that are skilled in the traditional technique of wattle and daub. This technique has been used for thousands of years. Wattles are a woven lattice of wooden stakes that are then 'daubed' with a mixture of mud, clay, animal dung and straw to create a structure. This can then be lime rendered or white-washed to give protection against the elements.In timber-framed buildings, using wattle and daub allows the construction to be flexible, so it can accomodate even severe structural movement.
Lime has been used in buiding work since Roman times, but use declined in the 20th century. Recently it has had a resurgence in use, as it has been realised that modern materials can be damaging. It is important that lime is used in the restoration of period properties. This is also better for the environment. Simply put, lime render reacts with the CO2 in rainwater in a repeated cycle. It is converted back to calcium carbonate (the original limestone). This means that over the years, it gets stronger and harder. Here at K.E. Jones & Son Builders, we use lime from the Anglia Lime Company
Quite a substantial job this kitchen refurbishment; but even though it made a considerable mess; the end result was worth it!
Here a view from before.
And another; notice the eccentric inclination of the old roof, compared with the new ceiling.
Click the link above for more pictures of the finished result. Quite stunning!