Staircases and balustrade access to canal

The Brief:

This was going to be an interesting one – was our initial reaction when we were contacted by customers who wanted a couple of staircases and balustrading to allow them to safely access the edge of the canal which runs along the bottom of their garden.

Our stairs were the last things to go in as the rest of the customer’s project consisted of totally remodelling the bottom of the property involving major groundworks to be able to get the different levels needed to get down to the canal.

Action taken:

We first made the trip to the site to accurately measure up and get a complete set of dimensions to be able to go back to the workshops and begin making the stairs, landing and balustrading.

We also invited the customers to our workshops to look at various samples and to decide various small details and make any alterations.

Once a design and specification were agreed upon we set about manufacturing, this was a straightforward process as we have done stairs like it before – it was the fitting of said stairs into a concrete and soil wall that was right next to a canal that was going to be the challenging part.


Once we had all the parts delivered to the site we could set about fitting, it took three of us a week as there was a lot of preparation to the concrete surfaces, paving and concrete walls before they could accept the stairs, landing and balustrade.

The end of the week soon came around and we finished just in time on a Friday evening, all that was left was to return with the glass in a week’s time and fit it all then fastened the handrails on top.

The hardwood we used was Iroko this is a nice dark hardwood which has a lot of natural oils within it, this is what makes it perfect for outdoor pieces especially near water as the natural oils really protect it well.

We set JLA Joinery quite a challenge asking for two flights of hardwood stairs to provide access to our newly terraced garden leading down to the canal. The result is incredible. Iroko stairs, a landing, balustrade and gates (to keep grandchildren safe) with glass panels to maintain views of the canal look great and are pitched just right as we get a bit older. Can’t recommend them highly enough.

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