Recognised internationally as leaders and within the founders of the fields of architectural paint research (paint scrapes & paint cross-sections), historic paint analysis, lead paint / historic interiors research, and known simply by their joint name, ‘Crick-Smith’; Ian and Michael have been providing a valued unique paint analysis, conservation and research service to the heritage sector since 1983. They have worked on many high-profile projects, including the St Pancras Midland Grand Hotel, Kenwood House, Kew Palace, Osborne House, Bletchley Park, the Glasgow School of Art and Willow Tea Rooms. They also specialise in the research of maritime history and vessels.
No longer associated with the University of Lincoln, they focus their work on paint analysis, architectural paint research, conservation of historic paint schemes, wallpapers, gilding / decorative finishes, with completion of 500+ projects for a range of clients and employers. They provide you, the client, with the information to inform your projects and decision-making, ensuring your project meets the highest possible standard of achievement and fits your own budget & timescale.
Historic paint analysis, architectural paint research, pigment analysis, lead analysis, wallpaper, renders, mortars and material analysis, combined with archival evidence tell the story you need to know to achieve accurate, practical and achievable results. The very best, high quality service for your project!
With backgrounds in conservation and archaeology, re-enforced with degrees in Conservation and Restoration, Crick-Smith completed 11 years of internationally recognised research at a UK university. Renowned as a consultancy, Crick-Smith understand what is required and to what level, so that you are not commissioning unnecessary and expensive work.
When you commission Crick-Smith you get the "Crick-Smiths".
All supported by Alfie J Russell.
Crick-Smith undertake research and conservation for a wide variety of clients and sites, materials and substrates; from historic houses and royal palaces, to industrial, military, public buildings, universities and colleges, bridges and vernacular properties. From ships of all shapes and sizes to military artefacts, including HMS Victory, HMS Warrior, HMS Namur, HMS M33, WW2 tank landing craft LCT 7074 and Ocean Pride PZ134 a Mounts Bay Lugger.
“Our main research tool is architectural paint research, sometimes called paint analysis or paint scrapes, although it is far more than analysing paint. By taking numerous samples from historic painted surfaces, analysing all of the layers in each and relating that to archival evidence, we are able to identify the history of that historic space. We can identify dates for alterations, repairs, remodelling, periods of neglect or disaster. This builds a complete picture of the history, used by our clients to inform decisions on the most suitable treatments and periods to preserve or recreate.”
Crick-Smith has carried out projects on a very impressive range of English Heritage properties.
Crick-Smith carry out their research in a highly professional and thorough manner, in site meetings and in reports, which are very well presented and clearly argued. In connection with Kenwood House, their contribution expanded into ongoing involvement in discussions over the consequences and implementation of their research.
Dr Jeremy Ashbee, Head Properties Curator, English Heritage
“The National Trust has used the services of Crick-Smith for paint research on a wide variety of projects since 1996. Their depth of knowledge and detailed documentation contributes significantly to the overall understanding of the decorative history of our properties. Crick-Smith's professionalism ensures that the project objectives are clearly defined, the work is completed on time and within budget.”
Christine Sitwell, Paintings Conservation Adviser, The National Trust
We have worked with Crick-Smith for several years, in particular on developing colours for the Covent Garden Market Building. Here they have been instrumental in the site analysis of historic paint colours on shed structures, shop fronts, and advising on period colours suitable for redecoration. They bring technical, and historical knowledge to the projects combined with a creative understanding which has been of great value.
Peter Riddington, Director & Architect, Donald Insall Associates
Crick-Smith are great fun to work with, both personable and approachable in their approach to conservation. Understanding historic sites is more than a mere vocation for them; they’re clearly compelled to seek out evidence for the places our ancestors once knew, and they don’t stop looking!
Dr Jonathan Foyle, Built Heritage Ltd
Crick-Smith produce clear detailed reports of their research, providing archive information and images. Photographs are included with a concise summary of each decorative scheme revealed during analysis, describing types/colours of paint, primers and substrate. Detailed analysis of paint sections follow with photos showing the layers of magnified paint. Advice is then given on the nearest available matching colour and type of paint to the historic paint revealed by the research.
Judy Allen, Architect, Julian Harrap Architects
Crick-Smith gave a seminar on their work to Historic Scotland in 2009 which was very well received. They are active in promoting their field via ICON and the Traditional Paint Forum and maintain good rapport with the heritage conservation sector. I have found their reports to be well laid out and present readily verifiable findings.
Dr Michael Pearce, Consultant, Historic Environment Scotland
Crick-Smith has undertaken a number of commissions in relation to projects under my direction.
I am impressed by the range of skills Crick-Smith possess, the care and attention to detail and the quality of the finished result. Their communication is also excellent so that options are presented and discussed before a final decision on any treatment is made.
Rodney Melville, Rodney Melville & Partners
We are happy to endorse the specialist services of Crick-Smith. Their input over the last 15 months to our restoration of the fire damaged Glasgow School of Art has been invaluable. Their forensic approach to paint analysis impressed us. Their undoubted expertise in the field and creative thinking lead to a full understanding of the type/sequence of decorative finishes. Easy to collaborate with; a pleasure and education. We are grateful for their input and recommend them to other parties.
Malcolm Mitchell, Page \ Park Architects, Glasgow
We have engaged Crick-Smith for the analysis on a variety of projects. Most recently the HLF funded restoration of St Mary's Lighthouse Whitley Bay. Crick-Smith came to site, took samples and reported on the historic paint colours, make up and substrate materials. This enabled us to specify the repairs and sympathetic new decorations. We received added value in understanding the historic paint materials and the techniques of the period when the Lighthouse was built.
David Beaumont,, Beaumont : Brown Architects