Col. G. A. Lewis, Highfield House, Highfield Road, Derby

Col. George Lewis wrote to the firm at the beginning of June 1936[1], requesting a representative pay him a visit as he was “thinking of putting up a glass entrance porch as a small conservatory”. This was to be replace of an existing stone portico style structure entrance, leading to the entrance hallway and sandwiched between two projecting bay windows, one to the dining room and the other to the drawing room.

At the initial on-site meeting several potential solutions were discussed, with Col. Lewis suggesting a lean-to glass roof over. The firm subsequently responded to the various potential solutions “we have carefully considered the various suggestions we made to you, and you made to us when we saw you a week or more ago, and we have come to the conclusion that it is not a feasible proposition to put a lean-to glass roof over the recess on the lines discussed letting it project beyond the glazed front so as to form a shelter from the rain, and we believe the proper way to tackle the problem is to fill in the space between the Portico and the two bays with lead flats, and put an overhanging glazed canopy supported on brackets off the glazed front,…..”.

The firm completed the design in about two weeks, replying to Col. Lewis, with an estimate of £91 7s. 6d., for the glazed front, lead flats and overhanging canopy and included “delivery of materials, fixing, painting and glazing; but excluded all the necessary builder’s work”. Col. Lewis engaged Messrs Joseph Parker & Son (Derby Ltd., of No. 70, Friar Gate, Derby to complete the building work (the firm had worked with Messrs. Parker, almost twenty years earlier, on another porch installation for Miss. S.E. Locke, Totnes, Duffield Road, Derby, a short distance away). The building work consisted of “building the necessary stone base for the porch to site on; and doing any cutting and making good to walls for timbers, flashing etc. and pointing same and disposal of the rain water.”

The porch was constructed using “best quality red Deal with Pitch Pine sills, all painted four coats of genuine lead paint”. The flats were “carried on wood bearers with strong boarded tops and panelled soffit”. The top boarding of the flats was covered with lead with flashings to back and sides. The front was glazed with 21oz. glass, with a pair of doors, secured with bolts and lock. The iron framed canopy was supported with four standard greenhouse brackets, glazed with 3/16in. bent double rolled cast plate glass. Rainwater disposal was accomplished using iron spouting at eave level and a down pipe to ground level.

In 2016, the residence will still extant, together with the porch.

Reference:

  1. Private Records.