Through the years there have been many stories involving people who buy an old house, venture into the attic and find valuable artifacts and treasures, often worth small fortunes. When restoration on the Red Antiquities Building began we found a treasure in our attic in the form of David Weeks!
Born in London, David Weeks started at the R.A.B. in October of 2011. David has assisted the project in many ways including the interior framing and partitioning found in the basement, creating a functional space never before realized in this historical building. However, its David’s work in the attic of the Red Antiquities Building that will truly leave a lasting legacy for years to come! Years of foundation corrosion and deterioration of the wood frame and siding had left the roof and attic of the Red Antiquities Building in quite a precarious situation – much more serious than most first realized! Quite literally, the roof had shifted position and required some ingenuitive thought and skilled handy-work to stabilize the century old wooden truss work before a new roof could be installed. What we now realize the roof really needed was David Weeks!
When this writer first approached David to interview him in regards to his experience with the Red Antiquities Building, it proved to be quite a challenge. The challenge came in the form of trying to get David’s undivided attention, not for lack of focus on David’s part, but rather due to the fact that other members of the crew continually came to David for advice and recommendation in regards to their task at hand. It became clear, in short measure, that David’s experience and knowledge was well respected by his peers in the trade. David brings to the Red Antiquities Building Project a wealth of experience in Home Renovation, Wood and Steel Framing, Siding Installation, Painting and a head turning education that includes Biology, Chemistry and Robotic Technology. David’s wide array of perspective and his ability to visualize complex solutions led to his work in the attic of the R.A.B. and what he now calls his “Pride and Joy!”
“It definitely was a challenge,” says David as he thinks back to the work which required him to maneuver in small and limited spaces. “It went from being in a horrible state to being great and it was excellent to be a part of the challenge . . . when my work was inspected by the Engineers and it passed with flying colours on the first inspection it was an incredible feeling!” When R.A.B Site Supervisor, Barry Primak, talks about the work David did in stabilizing the roof he speaks with accolades, “That wasn’t an easy job! There was nothing easy or straightforward about it! Hand cut rafters needed to be retrofitted. David literally had to manufacture the Hip Girders up there, bringing the entire roof back into stabilization. He headed up that part of the project and he outright conquered it . . . he even exceeded my expectations! David is a very, very skilled framer and any company who picks him up will see him as a definite asset!”
David looks back at his experience with the Red Antiquities Building and identifies that he has learned a great deal. “I’ve had experience in my past with meeting Residential Code but this has allowed me to learn a lot about meeting Commercial Code. And the guys here have been great. They’ve been honest and open in approaching me and asking for help and I’ve really enjoyed helping them to problem solve. ” When asked what sets him apart in being able to accomplish the work which has garnered him so much respect, David simply answers, “I like to get a lot of stuff done as quickly and efficiently as possible, I don’t like excuses and in my mind there’s no problem that can’t be fixed!”
So what’s next for David? “I hope to go back to school for Physics. My education has played a key role in my understanding of Carpentry and I think Physics plays a role in so many things around us. I think I’d like to also focus on Architecture!”
Whatever the future holds for David Weeks, we know the key role he has played in literally upholding a piece of London’s history. When you travel by the Red Antiquities Building, look up and realize that beneath the new Decra Roofing exists a story and a unique treasure of exceptional craftsmanship!
“Thank You, David!”