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Amazing UK architecture

Whether a building has been part of its local area for centuries, or is a contemporary construction, there's no doubt the UK is home to some of the most striking pieces of architecture in the world. 

In this blog, we look at some of the building materials, old and new, that have been used to create stunning buildings and features. 

  • Always look up

    Whilst the ceilings in historic buildings, such as the Sistine Chapel in Italy, are visited by thousands of tourists every year, the UK has its fair share of exemplary old and modern architecture that shouldn't be missed.  

    The ceiling at Ely Cathedral is considered one of the greatest feats of medieval engineering and design, and the stunning timber, stone and plaster dome in the St Stephen Walbrook church in London was based on Christopher Wren's original design for St Paul's Cathedral. 

    Dunmore Park in Scotland often comes top of 'most bizarre buildings' lists thanks to the 14-metre-high stone pineapple dome which sits on the top of the summerhouse. The intricately carved leaves are designed to withstand frost and are graded so water can't accumulate. 

  • More recently, in 2012 the 15-year project to create a new concourse at King's Cross station in London was completed. Sweeping up from the ground, the steel grid, features over 2,000 solid and glass triangle panels which envelop the area with light during the day and, thanks to coloured lighting, make a striking feature at night. 

    And don't ignore the ground

    It was perhaps the Georgians and Victorians who took flooring to a whole new level in the modern era. Influenced by Eastern Oriental architecture, the rich and famous of the time began installing complex ceramic floors in churches and homes as a status symbol.  

    When tiles started to become more mass-produced at the end of the 1800s the middle classes started copying the designs and original tiled floors can still be found in hundreds of homes up and down the country. Prior to this, hardwearing timber and concrete were the main flooring building material of choice.

Recently archaeologists have discovered mosaic floors across excavation sites in the UK that date back to Roman times.  The latest was unearthed in Leicester this year when a group from the University discovered one of largest Roman floor examples of the past 30 years.  

We've provided flooring materials for projects at some of the UK's most prominent locations, such as Horse Guards Parade, the London Designer Outlet and Buckingham Palace, which hundreds of people walk on every day without giving much thought to the work that goes in to creating the space.  Read more about some of the projects we've provided materials for here.

  • King of the Castle

    Castles – and the UK is home to quite a few – always feature on 'favourite UK buildings' lists and it's no surprise why. Built for protection, they generally housed Kings and Queens, and Lords and Ladies.  

    Oak timber and earth was predominantly used to build the structures and stone used to fortify them against attacks. Without modern day building technologies, castles would need 3,000 construction workers and take up to 10 years to complete.

    With many UK castles still standing today, they remain popular tourist attractions which was highlighted in a survey we launched towards the end of 2016.  We asked people to tell us what their favourite buildings are and castles featured heavily.  

    In particular, Highclere Castle came out on top with Hampshire residents and Arundel Castle was named by those that live in Sussex as their favourite. 

FARNHAM: 01252 711911

GRAVESEND: 01474 331164

BRENTFORD: 0208 569 8888

HORSHAM: 01403 892800