No-one in Essex needs assistance getting legless, but maybe you need to know who to call if you want walls skimming, ceilings smoothing, brickwork chopping out and all that other stuff a plasterer does. I did. We’re in Epping, and used a couple of guys recently who don’t seem to advertise – they were recommended to us by other people in the trade…
First up is Dave Griggs, who’s my number one choice – that is, if you’re not particularly PC and don’t mind getting your ear bent when you bring tea and coffee. Dave attacked some awful artexted ceilings in the bathoom and the whole of the ground floor for us.
He’s an older guy, very experienced, very fast and pretty cheap. Pretty nice job he made of it, too, with a very methodical approach: doing the ground floor involved dust-sheeting and scaffolding the whole area, and in spite of the volume of plastering done, it was fairly mess-free. Two guys came, both of whom could plaster.
The only drawbacks with Dave, apart from some outrageous comments, are the occasional dim decision (plastering a rose into the ceiling, for example) and that he’s always very busy. When we wanted him back to fix some walls he kept putting the job back and back. The downside of being good is being hard to get, I suppose, and like any tradesman, however good, you should never just leave ’em to it. Anyway, he’s based in Harlow, and you might get lucky with his availability: 01279 870119
Second up is a guy called Ray Dekeyzer, which to be honest I first thought was a comedy Essex name, but then stopped myself laughing because for all I know it’s an ancient and honourable surname steeped in the traditions of this or some other country.
Anyway, Ray was called in to skim the walls of our lounge/dining room area, mainly because Dave wasn’t available. He’s a bit more expensive and not as quick – two guys but only one plastering – and while there were a few spots that ended up needed some attention afterwards, in fairness he had a lot more to do than just the ceilings, and the walls weren’t flat to start with.
Overall it was a good job, though he pulled up the carpet to do the job because he didn’t have dustsheets in his van. That wasn’t a problem for us – the carpet’s next on the list to go – but it seemed a bit unnecessary. Another example of just having to manage people who do this stuff, I think. Ray’s based in Brentwood and is reachable on 07768 002457.