Introducing Britannicus Stone

Orlando Boyne, owner of Britannicus Stone, has made it his mission to rediscover Britain’s lost stones and as a result we have made him one of the new suppliers within our dedicated British stone section. We recently took the time to ask Orlando a few questions about the unique nature of his business.

How did you get into the stone business?
My previous role as an Estate Manager led me to work on a residential project for a neighbour’s extension through which I met a stone mason. Once the project had finished he asked to me help out on a number of renovations and conversions. One project in particular involved a huge cantilevered staircase in a neo-classical house where we installed a French stone. I couldn’t believe that we had to locate the stone in France, especially considering the original stone was sourced from the UK. Through discussions with geologist Graham Lott, who wrote the article ‘Shining Stones of Britain’, I discovered that there are a huge variety of British ‘marbles’ that have been completely ignored for centuries. I then set about finding quarries with stones that could compete with well known Italian marbles.

Where are the Britannicus stones quarried from?

The stones are quarried exclusively from all over the UK including: Devon, Somerset, Derbyshire, Durham, Wales and the Isle of Man.

The rarest stones that we supply are Ball Eye Blue from Derbyshire and Red and Green Serpentine from Anglesey. Ball Eye Blue is a very rare vein of Limestone/Fluorite conglomerate. Red and Green Serpentine is a stone that is essentially different from any kind of limestone in that it is a magnesium silicate - not calcium.

What sort of applications are your stones used for?

Some stones are used for decorative purposes with some clients even requesting to have slabs of rare stone hung on their walls as artworks. Other applications have ranged from different staircases, fireplaces and flooring projects.

What project are you most proud of and why?
The staircase that I discussed earlier is still a huge achievement as it is the biggest cantilevered staircase in Europe. I am also extremely proud of exclusively quarrying and reintroducing these unique stones back to the UK market.  

What do you think the future has in store for British stone?

I hope that in the future more people come to discover the beauty of British stone and that it is used and specified more frequently.

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