The Traditional Verandah Co

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by The Traditional Verandah Co's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from The Traditional Verandah Co is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett, MP
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles, MP

www.ttvc.co.uk

THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
22 | THE TRADITIONAL VERANDAH CO
Managing Director GeorginaSykes
One of our verandahs at the Chamberlain
Court residential care home, Tunbridge Wells
The Traditional Verandah Company, based in Ashford, Kent,
was established by Managing Director Georgina Sykes’ father
in 1999. Founder Richard Drake moved the company away
from recreating and repairing old columns and structures in favour
of constructing new, traditional-style structures instead – hence
the name change. In 2014, Richard decided it was time for him
to retire, and Georgina consequently took over. The company has
moved from employing two to seven people in the last five years,
having taken on larger premises, more vehicles and a greater body
of work. Georgina tells
The Parliamentary Review
that its focus
on delivering both a high-quality product and service has not
been lost, with thousands of satisfied customers all over the UK.
An idea that began life as a sketch on a scrap of paper has now become a
successful, well-regarded business; we are one of a handful of family-owned and
run companies operating nationally within the UK.
We offer a variety of products, from simple to more ornate in design, all of which
are made in the UK by British workers – something which many of our clients feel
passionately about. We offer a comprehensive end-to-end service, with customers
receiving an initial consultation, drawings and plans and assistance with planning
permission if required, all the way through to construction and installation.
We often hear from our clients how pleased they are they have chosen to work
with us – there are other companies out there offering similar products, with out an
end-to-end service as we do.
FACTS ABOUT
THE TRADITIONAL
VERANDAH CO
»Managing Director:
GeorginaSykes
»Established in 1999 by Richard
Drake
»Based in Ashford, Kent
»Service: Manufacture and
installation of bespoke garden
structures
»No. of employees: 7
»All TTVC products are made in
the UK
The Traditional
Verandah Co
23THE TRADITIONAL VERANDAH CO |
CONSTRUCTION & ENGINEERING
Customer service is all-important to
us; we are all consumers of one type
or another – and we all know how
frustrating it is to be a consumer and
not feel our patronage is valued. It’s
for this reason that we stay in touch
with our clients throughout every
step of the process – to allay any
concerns and reassure even the most
inexperienced project owners.
A tough decision
Over the past few years, namely after
the result of the EU referendum, there
has been talk within the industry
among competitors and business
owners about changing suppliers and
turning focus beyond the UK; many
have done so. It was our decision,
however, to keep our supply chain
firmly British.
We spent a long time looking into
this by speaking to our customers,
comparing prices and looking at the
pros and cons of every avenue we
could take. We felt strongly, however,
that as our product was born in the
UK, that’s where we wanted it to stay;
we proudly offer homegrown products,
knowing we are helping to support our
country’s economy along the way.
Proudly family-run
Not only is our company family-owned
and run, but many of our suppliers
are too – from our glass merchant to
our lead-effect roof supplier and our
powder coaters. This is something
we feel is important – we are not just
running businesses; we provide for our
families and for the families of those
we deal with.
When I retire, I hope that I can pass
the business on to my children as my
father passed it on to me. Aside from
Dad previously founding TTVC, my
husband also works here, and I hope
my children will come to do so in time.
Landmark projects – the
commercial and social care
sectors
Over the last two years, we have seen
a marked increase in commercial
projects; many wedding venues are
starting to offer additional outdoor
shelter as the trend for outdoor
weddings increases. This comes
alongside pubs and restaurants also
looking to increase the number of
covers they are able to provide with
extra seating.
We offer a
variety of
products,
from simple to
more ornate
in design, all
of which are
made in the
UK by British
workers
»DUCHY OF CORNWALL ESTATE AT POUNDBURY
Over the past 18 months, we have installed two structures
at the Duchy of Cornwall estate at Poundbury, near
Dorchester, in Dorset. We are very pleased to have this
association and are one of the only suppliers to have
been approved to work on this prestigious
development after it was finished.
Although we were installing reasonably standard
structures, the Duchy of Cornwall estate is very much
closed and almost a conservation area of its own. Any
change to properties must be pre-approved by the
duchy, no matter how minor – it’s an incredibly strict
environment to operate in, and we are now the only
approved installer of our kind to work on its property.
Given the success of the two projects we’ve undertaken at Poundbury thus far, we hope to continue to work with
the duchy long into the future.
BEST PRACTICE REPRESENTATIVE 2019
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
22 | THE TRADITIONAL VERANDAH CO
Managing Director GeorginaSykes
One of our verandahs at the Chamberlain
Court residential care home, Tunbridge Wells
The Traditional Verandah Company, based in Ashford, Kent,
was established by Managing Director Georgina Sykes’ father
in 1999. Founder Richard Drake moved the company away
from recreating and repairing old columns and structures in favour
of constructing new, traditional-style structures instead – hence
the name change. In 2014, Richard decided it was time for him
to retire, and Georgina consequently took over. The company has
moved from employing two to seven people in the last five years,
having taken on larger premises, more vehicles and a greater body
of work. Georgina tells
The Parliamentary Review
that its focus
on delivering both a high-quality product and service has not
been lost, with thousands of satisfied customers all over the UK.
An idea that began life as a sketch on a scrap of paper has now become a
successful, well-regarded business; we are one of a handful of family-owned and
run companies operating nationally within the UK.
We offer a variety of products, from simple to more ornate in design, all of which
are made in the UK by British workers – something which many of our clients feel
passionately about. We offer a comprehensive end-to-end service, with customers
receiving an initial consultation, drawings and plans and assistance with planning
permission if required, all the way through to construction and installation.
We often hear from our clients how pleased they are they have chosen to work
with us – there are other companies out there offering similar products, with out an
end-to-end service as we do.
FACTS ABOUT
THE TRADITIONAL
VERANDAH CO
»Managing Director:
GeorginaSykes
»Established in 1999 by Richard
Drake
»Based in Ashford, Kent
»Service: Manufacture and
installation of bespoke garden
structures
»No. of employees: 7
»All TTVC products are made in
the UK
The Traditional
Verandah Co
23THE TRADITIONAL VERANDAH CO |
CONSTRUCTION & ENGINEERING
Customer service is all-important to
us; we are all consumers of one type
or another – and we all know how
frustrating it is to be a consumer and
not feel our patronage is valued. It’s
for this reason that we stay in touch
with our clients throughout every
step of the process – to allay any
concerns and reassure even the most
inexperienced project owners.
A tough decision
Over the past few years, namely after
the result of the EU referendum, there
has been talk within the industry
among competitors and business
owners about changing suppliers and
turning focus beyond the UK; many
have done so. It was our decision,
however, to keep our supply chain
firmly British.
We spent a long time looking into
this by speaking to our customers,
comparing prices and looking at the
pros and cons of every avenue we
could take. We felt strongly, however,
that as our product was born in the
UK, that’s where we wanted it to stay;
we proudly offer homegrown products,
knowing we are helping to support our
country’s economy along the way.
Proudly family-run
Not only is our company family-owned
and run, but many of our suppliers
are too – from our glass merchant to
our lead-effect roof supplier and our
powder coaters. This is something
we feel is important – we are not just
running businesses; we provide for our
families and for the families of those
we deal with.
When I retire, I hope that I can pass
the business on to my children as my
father passed it on to me. Aside from
Dad previously founding TTVC, my
husband also works here, and I hope
my children will come to do so in time.
Landmark projects – the
commercial and social care
sectors
Over the last two years, we have seen
a marked increase in commercial
projects; many wedding venues are
starting to offer additional outdoor
shelter as the trend for outdoor
weddings increases. This comes
alongside pubs and restaurants also
looking to increase the number of
covers they are able to provide with
extra seating.
We offer a
variety of
products,
from simple to
more ornate
in design, all
of which are
made in the
UK by British
workers
»DUCHY OF CORNWALL ESTATE AT POUNDBURY
Over the past 18 months, we have installed two structures
at the Duchy of Cornwall estate at Poundbury, near
Dorchester, in Dorset. We are very pleased to have this
association and are one of the only suppliers to have
been approved to work on this prestigious
development after it was finished.
Although we were installing reasonably standard
structures, the Duchy of Cornwall estate is very much
closed and almost a conservation area of its own. Any
change to properties must be pre-approved by the
duchy, no matter how minor – it’s an incredibly strict
environment to operate in, and we are now the only
approved installer of our kind to work on its property.
Given the success of the two projects we’ve undertaken at Poundbury thus far, we hope to continue to work with
the duchy long into the future.
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
24 | THE TRADITIONAL VERANDAH CO
One project we weren’t expecting,
however, was a large development of
a residential care home in Tunbridge
Wells, Kent. This particular project,
by Goldfinch Developments, was a
special one; as much as the vision was
to create a “home from home” for
any residents, it was also intended
to provide a feeling of individuality
throughout the development.
This was certainly achieved – we
constructed and installed nine structures
at the site, some of which were built
over doors for private accommodation
and others installed in communal areas.
We have since been specified as the
supplier for verandahs and shelters on
large renovation projects at two separate
central London commercial premises.
Building on current and past
success
We hope to use our success to build
on the solid foundation we already
have – by reinvesting, we will be able
to update and improve our machining
mill. As it is used in every project for
fine tolerance engineering of our
bespoke components, an upgraded
mill would provide us access to a far
wider range of possibilities, with a view
to improving our capabilities further.
More importantly, however, we want
to relocate to larger premises in the
future, with a view to being able
to buy materials in larger quantities
thanks to increased storage capacity.
This would allow us to plan ahead on
a greater scale and improve our lead
times for the sake of our clients.
Once we have achieved this, we would
like to consider developing a wider
range of products, to enlarge our
portfolio and consequently provide a
greater variety of options for clients to
choose from.
We hope to
use our
success to
build on the
solid
foundation we
already have
One of two large free-
standing structures
erected at The Old
KentBarn
25BASEMENT MASTERS |
CONSTRUCTION & ENGINEERING
Managing Director EricMorson
A cosy basement completed
Eric Morson started out in the construction industry as an
apprentice plasterer in the mid-1970s and has seen a lot
of change in the sector over the past four decades. After
leaving school at the age of 15 with no qualifications, he is now
the Managing Director at Basement Masters, one of London’s
leading basement specia lists. Eric tells
The Parliamentary Review
more about his and the company’s journey.
I was thankful to get an apprenticeship as a plasterer when I left school. The work
was hard and labour intensive; my plight, arising from a lack of education, and then
finding my way into the building trade, wouldn’t have been too uncommon then.
One of the advantages that the building trade has to offer, should you have lost
out on early education or just be a late developer, is a genuine opportunity going
forward. Of course, there are also plenty of opportunities for further qualifications
in fields such as engineering, surveying, architecture and project management.
As I enter the back end of my career both the company and I, have ascertained
the knowledge and developed skill sets that help us progress more effectively.
My inner desire to create and achieve forced me to educate myself and gain
qualifications along the way. There was no structure to my early learning, and to
be honest, no real guidance. A good education, parental support and professional
guidance, would be best for all starting out in life, but where life does not afford
it to everyone, it is good that later opportunities can be found. It took me time to
understand business and as I always say, I paddled my own canoe and took the
long route.
FACTS ABOUT
BASEMENT MASTERS
»Managing Director:
EricMorson
»Founded in 2004
»Based in the London Borough
of Enfield
»Services: Installation of
basements all over London
»No. of employees: 25
»www.basementmasters.co.uk
Basement Masters

www.ttvc.co.uk

This article was sponsored by The Traditional Verandah Co. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Michael Gove.

Rt Hon Michael Gove's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Michael Gove

This year's Parliamentary Review comes at a momentous time for parliament, as we collectively determine the destiny of the United Kingdom. 

On October 31, the UK will leave the European Union. The successful implementation of this process is this government's number-one priority.

Three years after a historic referendum vote, we will deliver on the decisive mandate from the British people. Trust in our democracy depends on it. Until that final hour, we will work determinedly and diligently to negotiate a deal, one that abolishes the backstop and upholds the warm and close relationship we share with our friends, allies and neighbours in the EU. But in the event that the EU refuses to meet us at the table, we must be prepared to leave without a deal.

As the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, it is my job to lead on this government's approach, should that scenario happen. Preparing for Brexit is my department's driving mission. But while I am leading this turbocharged effort, the whole of government is committed to this endeavour.

Ministers across Whitehall are working together to ensure that every possibility is considered, every plan is scrutinised and every provision is made. A daily drumbeat of meetings means that we are holding departments accountable, so that preparations are completed on time.

The chancellor has confirmed that all necessary funding will be made available. And we have mobilised thecivil service, assigning 15,000 of our most talented civil servants to manage our exit from the EU.

We will make sure that on November 1, there is as little disruption to national life as possible. Our trade relationships will continue to thrive, thanks to agreements with countries around the world worth £70 billion. Our country will remain secure, thanks to nearly 1,000 new officers posted at our borders. And the 3.2 million EU nationals now living and working among us can remain confident, with absolute certainty, of their right to remain in the UK.

Above all, our goal is to be transparent. Soon, we will launch a public information campaign so that citizens, communities and businesses are ready and reassured about what will happen in the event of “no deal”.

In my first few weeks in this role, I have travelled to ports and tarmacs, borders and bridges, all across the UK –from the seaside of Dover to the rolling green hills of County Armagh. I have heard from business owners and border officials, farmers and hauliers. They are ready to put an end to uncertainty. And they are ready to embrace the opportunities ahead.

Our departure from the EU will be a once in a lifetime chance to chart a new course for the United Kingdom. Preparing for that new course will be a herculean effort. But this country has made astounding efforts before. We can do it again.
Rt Hon Michael Gove
Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster