18th Century roasting range and Herald closed range for No15 Great Pultney Street

We completed this job late last year for a hotel at No15 Great Pultney Street, Bath. The building dates from 1780s but was converted into a hotel in circa 1920. In the basement the original arched recess was still present (albeit bricked up) from the original roasting range whilst the space to its right had been squared off to take a closed range at some point. Both recesses were restored and I drew up a proposal to acknowledge the two significant dates in this building history that were of significance to its new custodians.
I suggest we make a replica of a roasting range from the 1780s to honour the buliding origins and secondly to install a closed range dating from circa 1920 to recognise when the building use changed into what it is today.
I sourced a "Herald" range by Russell & Sons since the brother of the firm ran the "Iron & Marble Co" in nearby Bristol and the "Herald" and "Gradient" ranges were stocked by them so its presence in such an establishment would be likely.
The 18th century roasting range was fabricated entirely by ourselves although the budget did not allow for the level of authenticity we would have hoped for. Nonetheless we feel the overal impression is very effectively and does justice to the building providence.

1830/40s Coalbrookdale range

Here we have something really special. This is a very early cooking range of the Coalbrookdale company. It has an adjustable fire cheek so the size of the fire can be increased or reduced for different purposes. Adjustment is via a rack and pinion system that is controlled with a crank handle that fits into a socket on the left hand side sham.
This range also comes with a large wrought iron chimney crane for hanging pots/ griddle/ pans etc over the fire.
The depth of the releif and gauage of the castings shows its quality and it goes without saying that this would have been a very expensive piece of apparatus back in the day.
Follow the 'Contact' tab above if you are interested in this range.

Replica 1840s ‘Midland’ range

I was recently asked to find a specific example of a 'Midlands' range. After much searching we sadly could not find something the correct size for the gentlemans chimney recess. We decided then to make one! Here is a picture from the early stages of the project showing a scale drawing of what we plan to acheive. The sham plates and bars placed around are originals for reference. Next stage is to cut the sham plates from 1/2" ply to start work on the patterns. The range will eventually measure 43" across and will comprise of original oven and boiler.
We suspect it will be the first range of its type to be cast since around 1850!

Restoration complete on early cooking range

I got another restoration out last week. This one was a big project. Although it appears to be simply in its construction there was a lot of damage and required several major new castings. Since it is such an early example (circa 1820) the castings are all very thick and large. The boiler and oven are both single castings which is a hell of an acheivement for the period.
It is now back home and awaiting to be reinstalled in a newly restored scullery.

Early range to be restored

I was contacted by a company restoring a very prestigious house in Bristol that was built between 1780 and 1820. Much of the range appears to be in reasonable condition but the top plate has suffered from a long working life along with the hot plates. As much of the original range will be kept as possible but section that have suffered too badly will be renewed. These news parts will be dated and labelled to add to the chronology of the range whilst maintaining it in working order.

Very ealry ‘Open’ Range

Now here is something that doesn't come up very often at all. It's a beautifully cast early 'open' range, called such because the firebox was open rather than the fully enclosed ranges produced later in the century. This range bridges the gap between the 18th century open down hearth ranges and the later closed type. Early cooking was preformed in a wrought iron grate, usually with adjustable cheeks with various ancillary parts like a chimney crane, spits and smoke jacks and spit jacks etc to turn them.
Here, various features of the earlier method have been retained like the adjustable cheek (used to alter the size of the fire) and chimney crane. However, the fire now features an oven and hot plates for cooking and the whole is cast into a range with fantastic classical detailing. The cheek is moved via a rack that is wound with a crank handle engaged in a socket to the bottom left of the firebox- a great detail!
I have loosely mocked this range up but will be restoring it at some point early next year unless otherwise requested. Most likely dating from around 1830-1840.

Well it's been a really busy few weeks here. We've been up and down the country working, buying and selling and I'm now back at the workshop to catch up with the on going work here.
I went to take a look at two Shepherds huts yesterday with a mind to restoring them for the owner of the estate where they still are. One is in reasonable nick but the other is a real project.
The Ideal Domestic boiler is off up to London for its new life on a boat on the Thames. I've been busy making a log store/ base for it to stand on which should look very smart and raise boiler to a more convenient height for cooking etc.
I've got three new acquisitions this week alone. Firstly a very nice Coalbrookdale open range that I just couldn't pass up. Sadly I can't make out the digits on the RD mark but I suspect it is circa 1860 and certainly no later than 1868.
Next is a Larbert portable range, this is probably the most desirable of the portable ranges and they don't come up very often. It's in reasonable nick but will certainly take more than a bit of work to get it up to scratch again!
Lastly is a very nice early open range. This type of range predate any dating marks so it is hard to know when they were cast. The earliest example that I have restored was in Bristol and dated from 1813. This one is likely to be a bit later but is almost certainly pre 1840s.