News: Skill and cast iron help restore Derry church

05 August 2011

We had to cross the Irish Sea for our latest architectural heritage commission. A visit to Londonderry for some restoration work on a very impressive Presbyterian church situated near the old city walls.

Andy Knight, our foundry business manager, was in Londonderry (or Derry, depending on your religious/political leanings) recently to visit the First Derry and Claremont Presbyterian Church opened in 1780.

He was photographing, measuring up and taking resin moulds of the ornate railings with a view to manufacturing additional railings that will provide a perfect match to the Victorian originals. We will be making new patterns based on the railings and these require precise detail if we are going to achieve an accurate reproduction.

We had already made some new cast iron gates to match the old. Bond Architects are responsible for the project and Woodvale Construction, who are the contractors, sent us an original gate. From this we were able to take resins and make new patterns and subsequently cast perfect replicas.

So hopefully in the near future we can do likewise with the cast iron railings and further help with the restoration and conservation of this landmark building in the heart of Derry.

Whilst taking the photos Andy couldn’t help but notice that the cast iron rainwater system was provided by Hargreaves Foundry Drainage, so he got some shots of that as well.

Cast iron railings and drainage

Ornate railings we will replicating

The new cast iron gates

New cast iron gates, made by Hargreaves Foundry