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Working across London’s unique and historic centre, we deliver specialist property care services to customers from Chancery Lane and Ludgate Circus to Barbican and St. Paul’s with passionate, helpful and knowledgeable experts.
We are well-versed in dealing with the complexities of treating all manner of rot, damp or woodworm problems within the limitations of London’s business heartland. Whether it’s an office on Gresham Street or a Georgian terrace in the Threadneedle Street conservation area, we have innovative solutions and the expertise to solve rising damp and wet or dry rot problems effectively. We have worked hard to build a reputation of trust, reliability and expertise with our customers, always aiming to deliver top quality local property care services supported with the resources of a national company.
I have worn the Rentokil shirt for 31 years, originally for seven years as a surveyor and then in various management roles. During that time I have always aimed to provide the highest level of service and best advice to provide the best and most economic solutions to our customers.
The heart of central London dates back to the original walled Roman settlement. Few buildings predate the Great Fire of 1666; the notable exceptions are the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey and a few scattered Tudor survivors in the City of London. Central London contains a wide variety of styles, from Wren's late 17th-century churches and the financial institutions of the 18th and 19th century (Royal Exchange and the Bank of England) to the early 20th century Old Bailey. During the Georgian era (1714-1830), London grew rapidly, hence much of inner London is dominated by Georgian buildings, which are distinctive, as they are constructed from London stock brick, which have a yellowish colour (but after centuries of pollution looks grey - see 10 Downing Street as an example).
Continual change, redevelopment and refurbishment have led to ‘lost’ rivers (like the Walbrook and the Fleet, which were built over) and hidden tunnels and unseen voids in complex structural changes over the years that can make rot, damp and woodworm issues more difficult to trace.
Thames flooding has always been a periodical problem. The last major flood in the City was in 1928 when the river overwhelmed basement homes in Southwark and Lambeth, with part of Millbank collapsing into the river. Surprisingly, Farringdon, Temple, Moorgate and the City of London are today, more likely to suffer flood damage from surface water flooding (flash flooding after intensive rainfall) than the Thames breaching its banks. A combination of impermeable surfaces, Bazalgette’s 1860 Victorian sewage network, and the historical channelling of the Fleet and Walbrook rivers directly into an already over-strained system has left central London’s drainage system under increased pressure to cope with intense rainfall.
Months after flooding has occurred and the waters have retreated, damp may no longer be visible. Yet moisture levels in some timbers within a property, can remain high enough (above about 20%) for dry rot to decay the wood.
Woodworm is the every-day name for hungry larvae of wood-boring beetles. Adults lay eggs in cracks in wood and the larvae (woodworm) burrow deep into it and feed, making a maze of tunnels over several years. They will happily eat away at wooden floors, furniture and timbers and if left untreated, can seriously weakens wooden beams in a property which can lead to structural failure of the timbers.
Spotting the early signs of woodworm is important; allowing a qualified surveyor to complete a woodworm survey assessing the extent of any problem, the type of woodworm involved and recommending the most effective, targeted treatment to eliminate the pest before it can spread any further through the property.