Abbottwade

Category Archives: Articles

Meet ‘Winston Wolfe’: Aftercare at Abbott-Wade

Winston Wolfe was the famous ‘fixer’ from Pulp Fiction who defines his role with the line, ‘I solve problems’. We have no need for this Harvey Keitel character, instead we have Adam – our Abbott-Wade equivalent (only much less intimidating and far more friendly). Affectionately known to his friends as ‘Wiggy’, Adam’s career started in cabinet making – a trade which demands a keen eye for detail. His passion for renovating camper vans and building durable, quality longboards (skateboards to you and I) in his spare time has honed his ability to adapt his carpentry skills to solve almost any problem. All of this makes him the ideal perfectionist for the position of Abbott-Wade’s resident ‘Fixer‘, or Aftercare Fitter to give him his official title.

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Reflecting on The National Family Business Awards: How a winning evening was reported

It’s been some time since our award winning visit to Wembley Stadium for the National Family Business Awards. Despite the time which has passed there’s still a spring in our step and buzz in the air. It still means a lot to us as being a family business is something which we’re very proud of and gains great respect from our customers. Naturally, family and friends were quick to pass on their congratulations but as time has passed, the news has spread and accolades have been coming in from the wider community. This in itself it a hue compliment especially as we’re proud of our community and the role we play in it employing local people.

Take a look back at some of the local coverage we received following our Award Winning evening:

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What makes us different?

There’s a few staircase companies out there. If you’re reading this no doubt you’ve been shopping around and come across some of them for yourselves. However, please don’t tar us all with the same brush, because there’s quite a few things which set us apart from the rest.

You probably already know that we’ve been specialising in new flights and staircase renovations for over 20 years – since 1996 in fact. You probably also know that we’re a family run business which has many advantages for both us and our customers. But look a little deeper and you see that there’s other subtle differences which mean that Abbott-Wade is more likely to be the best match for you.

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St Andrews Day

To celebrate St Andrew’s Day we thought we’d share one of our favourite Scottish staircases. Hidden within the tower of the National Wallace Monument on the Abbey Craig is a spectacular spiral staircase comprising 246 steps. More than just a staircase, the monument which commemorates the 13th Centre Scottish hero William Wallace is home to the 1.6 metre Wallace Sword among other artefacts.

 

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Staircase Stories

Whether in a terrace or a town house, a mansion or a maisonette – every stairwell and every staircase has it’s own unique story. Abbott-Wade have been collecting some of these stories on our travels around the country; finding out out the reasons for transformations, the history and inspiration of staircases in homes just like yours.

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Carpeting your stairs

Carpeting your staircase

 

Of course, carpets aren’t about aesthetics, they soften noise from the stairs which are a high-traffic area of the home and add additional comfort and warmth underfoot. At Abbott Wade, we understand that choosing the right style of carpet for your home is like buying an item of clothing – it’s all about what suits your style and needs. It must also be in keeping with the character of your home. There are also other pragmatic considerations for when you’re choosing a carpet. For example, do you opt for a thick and luxuriously soft carpet or a more hard wearing material like sisal or coir which is more corse in texture? Lighter cream and whites are great for making a stairway feel brighter but have the downside of showing up dirt and stains on the stairs – which is bound to happen given the high levels of through-traffic in this part of the home.

What is right for one home is not right for another, but how do you know what the right choice is? One tip is simply to take a look at what other homeowners have chosen to do and try to reflect on whether the same ideas will transfer to your home. You will see ideas you like – equally you’ll see ideas which you don’t. This is also useful as it will help you to remove certain styles from the equation. Similarly, you may have an idea in your mind but be surprised by something you see which changes your perspective in a positive or negative way.

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Design Team Meeting

One of the problems with offering a Nationwide service is that our design team members spend a lot of time travelling up and down the country so it can be difficult to all sit down together – but it’s important that we do. It’s an opportunity to discuss new ideas, collect feedback about what our customers have looking for and to debate current and future trends to ensure that we’re always putting our customers needs first.

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This must happen in businesses up and down the country – but it’s unusual that the key players is the directors mother.  Jean Wade stole the show with her cheese cake to rival anything you’d find in the final of The Great British Bake Off. In a true family business tradition which you’ll never find in the board rooms of big businesses – proud mum Jean was on hand with cakes, sandwiches and cups of tea for the appreciative team. For a design team who have backgrounds working for some big corporations, it epitomises what working for a family business means; all the family rallying around to do the best we can for each other and the common cause. Something which has drawn them away from careers working with big corporations and into our close-knit family business. Working in this way is a welcome and refreshing change for many employed at Abbott-Wade, however for the family members working here – it’s just another day at the office!

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Metal Spindles

Metal spindles make a bold statement in any home. They create an air of strong elegance and offer a surprisingly versatile option when planning your staircase design. Our range of steel spindles are available in traditional styles such as the slender Buckingham & Sandringham spindles which taper towards a classic knuckle or the grander basket design of the Windsor.

Alternatively the contemporary flowing lines of our Ripple and Wave spindles add a modern twist to this style of spindle.

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Staircases in Culture: Language

The English language is melting pot of many influences, mainly from the Germanic languages introduced in the 5th-7th centuries AD from the German/Dutch regions. Add in more Scandinavian influences from the viking settlements in 7th-9th centuries and language from the Norman conquest in the late 15th Century together with the many influences from Greek and Latin and we arrive at the language we all use today. Consequently the terminology and common phrases around staircases are varied making their etymology is an interesting thing.

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