We developed ‘Designer Drives’ almost 30 years ago..
How it started..
We had worked for a London Parks Department, on some of the projects we were doing we needed to use a strong material, at the time Marshalls were testing a product called Monolok, it had been developed in Europe for use at bus stops to prevent the vehicles sinking into the tarmac.
These ‘monolok’ blocks were differing sizes and worse ‘z’ shaped, so a nightmare to design with.but a really clever idea as they interlocked together, without using mortar.
Our contact rushed in one day with some new ‘brick shaped’ grey blocks, telling us red would also be available soon.
We immediately saw an opportunity as using traditional bricks required a heavy duty version and worse it took days to point … see below.
This particular in and out driveway too 10 man days just to point the bricks, where as this drive below took 4 hours to sand in with kiln dried silica sand..
We then refined our techniques, adding our own recessed manhole covers and canting the edges so homeowners knew where they were as they drove around their garden – the slightly raised edge looked great visually too and set us apart from any competition.
and here a well constructed and cut in recessed cover… but this time using a softer stock brick.
when well done its very hard to see, as in this picture..
We soon added ‘fish- scale’ granite setts and phorphery setts to our collection..
Here’s some granite…much more expensive but they look superb !
When using ‘natural’ products, such as the granite and real bricks it is important to remember that they are often differing sizes, this means that it is very easy to lose the design matrix if you have too big an area with out adequate changes in direction.
The stock bricks below a work for about 1.8m ( 6ft) and then you need to add a break line or the pattern will start to wander off.