TV PRESENTER Griff Rhys Jones is urging property owners not to neglect building maintenance in the run up to National Maintenance Week.
Griff, seen in popular BBC TV show, Mountain and Restoration, aims to encourage homeowners and people who care for public buildings such as churches, village halls and local authority properties to be aware of the simple, economic and achievable maintenance steps they can take at the beginning of winter to stave off costly major faults and damage at a later date.
He said: “It’s really common sense. My own experience of maintenance has everything to do with being house-proud.
“If you look at your lovely house for long enough you will probably spot that it’s falling apart!
“Global warming is making exterior paint last less long. Gutters fill up with leaves. Tiles ping off. I was recently with a farmer in North Yorkshire walking through someone else's farm where a lot of the dry stone walls had fallen down and remarked that it must be a big problem.
"But it's not. It's easy. Just repair it when it happens. Leave it and others fall down and then the job becomes huge."
National Maintenance Week takes place each year in November to remind anyone who looks after a building, regardless of its age, type or purpose, of the simple, achievable steps they can take to prepare for the worst that winter can bring.
This year the Week will take place from Friday November 16th to Friday November 23, National Gutters Day!
This year The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, which runs National Maintenance Week is demonstrating that good maintenance makes a positive contribution to sustainable living.
One of the key questions SPAB will urge people to ask this year when dealing with maintenance is: what can I repair, not replace? – a maxim that echoes the words of William Morris on the foundation of the SPAB back in 1877: “Put protection in place of restoration. Stave off decay by daily care.”
SPAB is Britain’s oldest conservation body fighting to save old buildings from decay and dereliction, but the message of National Maintenance Week is relevant to everyone who owns or cares for a property; whether it’s 500 years old or brand new.
Water damage is a particular concern – especially as the winter rains approach. The annual cleaning of gutters and drains (at roof and ground level) can be much cheaper and less inconvenient than having to cope with a serious outbreak of dry rot in timber roof trusses and floorboards following years of neglect.
National Gutters Day (Friday 23 November 2007) is a timely reminder to homeowners that just a few minutes spent clearing weeds and debris, or just a few pounds spent to mend a leaky gutter can save many hundreds, and possibly thousands of pounds!
For further information visit SPAB’s dedicated National Maintenance Week website, www.maintainyourbuilding.org.uk
Throughout National Maintenance Week 2007, SPAB’s dedicated technical helpline will be open every morning to give callers advice and guidance on maintenance issues. Telephone: 0207 456 0916.