As part of the works to St Dunstan’s Court on Fetter Lane, London, Hall Conservation Ltd was asked to design, manufacture and install an extension to the existing wrought iron railings and conserve the existing listed railings. As part of the works Hall Conservation Ltd conserved and relocated the original K2, Giles Gilbert Scott red telephone box.
The specification required the new railings to be made from genuine wrought iron, using traditional blacksmithing techniques. In addition to the ironwork the Portland stone plinth had to be detailed to exactly match the existing. Careful measurements and templates were taken of the existing stone and site to create detailed CAD drawings for manufacture and the various suppliers. Over 7 tons of new stone and 3 tons of iron has been installed on site.
In order to accurately replicate the original design on site we had to produce a wide range of tools and jigs to re-recreate the original detailing. The railing panel finials required 5 fire welds to produce one of the ‘tree’ details. The design of the railings appeared relatively simple, however, its simplicity made it all the more critical to ensure that our new sections matched exactly with the originals, this included working to the original imperial spacings and section sizes.
To conserve the listed railings, Hall Conservation Ltd successfully used the ‘Therma-tech’ high pressure steam cleaning system to prepare the ironwork and strip back the many layers of failing paint. The Therma-tech system allows us to accurately control the level to which we strip the paint. In this case the original lead based paint was still well adhered to the ironwork and providing good protection. Carefully controlling the Therma-tech system allowed us to remove just the failing alkyd paints and leave a sound surface for final preparation, spot priming and repainting with a modern top coat.