The Brief 

This prestigious new build development in Summersdale Chichester needed many joinery projects, and thankfully JLA Joinery was chosen to undertake them!

At the front entrance to the property, we were asked to create a large, curved detail porch frontage and fit a large bespoke front door to the plans submitted by the developers, Elberry Properties. It was to have a paint finish so the hardwood sapele was chosen, which lends itself perfectly to being very hard wearing when paired with a good decoration and finishing touch.

Action taken

Once we had looked through the plans and talked through options about the design we then made a 1 to 1 scale drawing of the front door to double-check proportions and make small changes as required before we began to manufacture. Once the front door and its frame were made, we hinged it in our workshops and fitted all the ironmongery to it to minimise time fitting on site.

For the porch frontage, the large curved beam was the most time-consuming part to make as this needed many glued laminations to be made to achieve the final thickness of 100mm. We began by making a former for the laminations to bend and be clamped round. The next step was we could then machine the sapele into thin strips so they could bend easily around the radius.

The other parts were fairly straightforward! The best part was we were able to break out my grandfather’s old lathe to help turn a small piece of oak, which was needed for a small round detail hanging from the centre of the curve. The porch frontage was made and assembled as much as possible in our workshops again to minimise construction on the building site.


The finished components for the porch frontage came out well and were all given a coat of primer ready to be handed over to the roofers. They were ready to fit it into place and then began to pitch the roof above ready to accept the watertight leadwork.

We fitted the front door and frame, giving the property some much-needed security. All that was left to do was for the decorators to work their magic and get it all looking smart.

For this project, we worked alongside Construct 10 owned and run by director Pete Frettsome and developers, Elberry Properties – check them out!

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