About the company
Our directors, Andrew Sharland and Andrew Ziminski met in the early 1990s whilst attending the Postgraduate Stone Conservation course at Weymouth College, Dorset.
Both went on to gain further training on the repair of the tower and spire of Salisbury Cathedral before establishing Minerva.
We are lucky to have a great team with fine conservation work undertaken by Nell Pickering assisted by Sharra Oram, Peter Yorke and George Woodland.
Clare Venables RVM is our historic plasterwork specialist.
He started his training in the late 1980's at the Weald and Downland Museum on the reconstruction of the early C17th Reigate house.
In 1998 he was awarded a William Morris Craft Fellow by the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings. This advanced training scheme, designed originally to train future Clerks of Works, gives fellows a unique insight into the most sympathetic repair techniques to historic buildings and best practice in the field.
In March 2020 John Murrays - established in 1768 and publisher of Darwin, Jane Austen and Lord Byron will add Andrew to their list with his first book, provisionally titled 'THE STONEMASON.'
Below, An early project for the Directors on the Market Cross, Devizes.
Minerva usually works in the area known as Wessex in the UK, but undertakes church monument conservation work throughout the UK and abroad.
Minerva has worked as the principal contractor on a large number of projects, including:
It is a privilege to feature on the cover of the reissued Repair of Ancient Buildings written by AR Powys in 1929. This invaluable work is available from the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings bookshop.
We annually host SPAB Fellows and Scholars (craftspeople and architects respectively).
We deliver the stone conservation package to the SPAB Repair course.We are also happy to speak to the public and other interested parties about our work at such events as Architectural Heritage Days at the National Trust's properties at Kingston Lacy, Corfe Castle and Tyntesfield house near Bristol. This has included demonstrating plastering on lath and masonry skills such as letter cutting and architectural stone carving.
We are well used to sharing our knowledge about the conservation of historic buildings and specifically the techniques we employ and materials we use which are crucial for maintaining the happy equilibrium of an old building.
"I have greatly appreciated the expertise of you and your colleagues as we worked through the unexpected complications of this year's work. It is always a pleasure to work with people who make their own craftsman contributions rather than just doing what was originally specified”.
Sherborne Abbey PCC
“Very impressed with the expertise of your staff and the method and execution of the works”
Aspire Defence Manager, for works to the Royal Artillery officers mess