Matt (Mindaugas Mattas) is one of our longest serving joiners and carpenters. At 36 years old, he has been with the company since its formation: from fitting kitchens in his first year, to the full renovation and restoration projects of today.
Originally from Lithuania, he began to hone his skills on his father’s house, helping to build it from scratch nearly 20 years ago. He then moved to London in 2002 working for a number of different companies before joining Goodbody & Co. in 2008. A precise cabinet-maker and joiner, he is also a knowledgeable builder and at his happiest when making unusual projects run smoothly.
Over the last two years he has been meticulously restoring a beautiful Tudor hall in East Anglia with a team of other specialists including Gints Ozols and Tomasz Proba, who are also long serving members of the company.
The challenges have come in many forms. The sheer scale of the building has made every minor alteration an exercise in planning and creativity, while its unique history has demanded the attention of consulting architects, engineers, heritage consultants and planning officers – all of whom needed to be shepherded around the building on a near monthly basis.
To date, the greatest challenge has been the restoration of structural timberwork over the main stairs (see Newsletter 1). The 8 ton beam structure is now entirely concealed within the lath and plaster walls and ceiling and the efforts to support and restore it all but invisible to the casual eye. In Matt’s view this is the perfect outcome.
More recently Matt and the team have completed the restoration of the historic panel work in various state and formal rooms, spending several weeks studying and copying the existing panels in order to produce closely matched details.
Asked what the project has taught him, Matt is philosophical: “we will never know all the secrets of this beautiful house but we have started to understand how 16th century craftsmen managed without power tools.“
For more information about restoration work, see our most recent Restoration of Historic paneling case study