Restoring and beautifying London's most prestigious homes with love for almost 100 years.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Sharing success

We have been featured in the Inspiring Business Performance (IBP) monthly newsletter for our achievement in attaining the Investors in People Health & Wellbeing award.

Another great opportunity to share our success with others who may just be setting out on our journey and encourage them to go for it...

Read more here

Contact us via to find out about adding value to your business.

Friday, 30 September 2011


Hi, Niki here. I just wanted to add a few thoughts on the previous post.

It's a truly exciting time and a delight to see Andy move into the role of MD (and very much deserved), and we wish him every success. I am confident that he has the skills needed to succeed, as well the support, respect and co-operation of us all. I would like to wish him wonderful days as the new MD!

We cannot let the day pass without marking the sad news that Nancy is leaving us. However Bastows being Bastows, we know we will ALWAYS be family, and we will still see a lot of her!

Personally, I have to say that Nancy has been a wonderful colleague, dedicated and hardworking, but someone who has also become one of the truest friends you might wish for. It won't be the same here without her... although I know different can also be good!

Nancy, this is to say a more heartfelt 'thank you, and I'll miss you' to you. We have come to share the ups and downs of life and learned to 'treat those two impostors just the same'. We have laughed and seethed together more often than we care to count. We have shared cocktails and tea in equal measure, in London and Las Vegas. I have listened to your insight and your inimitable way of stating exactly what's wrong with a thing (as well as what needs to be done about it), and for that I thank you.

We have made fantastic memories in the 4 years we've been friends and colleagues, and we are not done yet, missus.

Nancy, you're one in several million and we will see you soon, and often.

Our love and luck goes with you on your next adventure.

Hello, Goodbye

Bastows are delighted to announce the appointment of Andy Raczinkaitis as our new Managing Director.

Andy has been involved in th
e building industry for the majority of his career. He worked with our founder Derek Bastow for many years overseeing the scaffolding division of the business, before leaving to set up his own venture, enjoying great success in the field of heating engineering. He returned to Bastows in 2009 to manage the tendering of new projects and work closely with Sales Director Dave Brown to set up our ‘small works’ division.

Frank Bastow, now CEO, said:
"I cannot think of anyone better placed to entrust our Family to. Andy’s strong industry background, dedication and his drive to develop great relationships will be significant assets to us in the coming years. On behalf of the entire company, I am delighted to appoint Andy as a Managing Director that can lead our Family into the future.”

Commenting on his appointment, Andy said:
“Bastows has a proud history and is well-known for high quality and innovation, having built a trusted and valued reputation in our market. My role will be to build upon this strong foundation and help the Company to fulfil our intent, adhere to our values, and continue to deliver peace of mind to clients, residents and Family members.”

New adventures await...

After four years as a dedicated and much-loved member of our team, we are sad to share the news that Nancy Baker will be leaving us on 30 September.

Nancy plans to move out of the area due to her husband Paul landing a fantastic job - however on the upside, she will be moving to the coast, so a life filled with sea air, buckets and spades (and visits from us) awaits them!

Nancy may be leaving our team, however, we know that she will ALWAYS be a part of our Family.

Please join us in wishing Nancy all the very best in her new adventures, and love and luck in her journey. She will be missed by us all!

For more information please contact Niki Rosenbaum via

Thursday, 15 September 2011


We've just received our Considerate Constructors Scheme report back for our project at 130-152 Buckingham Palace Road and are delighted to share the news that we scored an amazing 37 out of 40 points.

The site is managed by Almir Mujagic, who has been with Bastows for over 10 years and is a dedicated and talented member of our Site Management team. Almir had support from our Health & Safety Auditor Adam Crichton, who has championed the CCS programme from its inception.

The CCS scheme monitors how we operate a site over 8 different criteria- Considerate, Environment, Appearance, Good Neighbour, Respectful, Safety, Responsible and Accountable.

This includes not one but TWO 5s for our Responsible approach and Environmental awareness, with 4.5 across the remaining six areas. This is the first time we have ever scored two 5s, and we are enormously proud of our guys for this achievement.

The monitor particularly praised our "Comprehensive community notice board providing photographic detail of works", "high standard of presentation", "Extensive community participation (and)... meaningful charitable donations", our strong Corporate diversity and equality policy and Occupational Health programme including body mapping. It was also noted that our website affords a great way for the public to contact us, including our use of Twitter and Facebook. He recognised that CCS is "integral to company objectives with awareness
encouraged from board level throughout the company." The monitor commented too on the "high standard" of our public image and approachability, "proactive approach to waste elimination" and energy efficiency & rainwater harvesting policies.

As Gold award winners in 2008 and 2010, and National 'Most Considerate Site' award winners in 2010, we know the value of working with the Considerate Constructors Scheme and how their standards can be used as an essential benchmark to help your Company and improve the image of the construction industry.

We are delighted to share this news with you and hope you will join with us in thanking Almir, Adam and the team on site for their efforts, hard work and desire to excel.

Guys- from our hearts: THANK YOU, and CONGRATULATIONS!


Meet the team...


"I was born in Bosnia and Herzegovina and lived there until I was 18; little did I know when I was a young lad that I would end up living in London.

I attended a Technical college there and started working as an apprentice plumber when the war started - and all my plans and aspirations were put to rest.

I arrived in London in February 1993 on a special flight. When I was at the airport a guy my age approached me and asked if I could spare a cigarette... his name was Cupo, and he became one of my best friends.

I was in awe of this big city, didn't know the language and it was a scary prospect - I had to rebuild my life.

I worked as a labourer, car wash assistant, chippie and eventually as a painter and decorator.

I joined the Bastows family in 1999 and haven't looked back since. It has been a learning curve and I have enjoyed (most) of it so far.

Besides being a great Site Manager, I am also a proud dad of two (ages 15 and 10 respectively). I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, love photography, have a passion for music and I’m also a bit of a film buff."

ADAM CRICHTON, Health and Safety Auditor
"I’m shortly going to enter my fourth year working within the Bastows family. I enjoy going out with friends on the weekend in and around London to relax, whether it be playing football in the park or on a night out.

I also enjoy boxing and basketball especially during the fine British summers..!
My favourite song is Mr Brightside by The Killers and my favourite film is Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas."

Friday, 19 August 2011

Bastows feature in Master Builder magazine

Bastows are featured in this month's 'Master Builder' magazine, the journal of the Federation of Master Builders. We have been proud members of this respected organisation for many years and are delighted to be asked to share our Investors in People story with other members.

Many thanks to all in the Family who have been a part of and supported us in our achievements.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Bastows on the Breakfast Show- ABSOLUTEly fabulous!

Today Frank Bastow, along with Chris Craker (his business partner in Craker Media Company) went in to the Christian O'Connell Breakfast Show on Absolute Radio following the bid made to support Hazel and Steve of Paradise Gems (see previous article.)
Pic: Frank and Chris with Christian O'Connell, 
Maggie Doyle,
Andrew Bailey and Richie Firth

Frank and Chris were made very welcome by the team led by producer Greg Burke, and had a great morning swapping banter with Christian and seeing behind the scenes on this award-winning radio show.

The visit was a great 'thank you' to Frank and Chris for supporting Christian's appeal to help Paradise Gems, and we are all delighted that Bastows and Craker Media were able to help another hard-working family business and be a part of a hard-working breakfast show team.

Friday, 12 August 2011

We're Making London Beautiful again...

London has been battered this week, with civil disturbances and terrible violence on our streets. Some areas have suffered terribly, with homes and businesses lost in moments, leaving people in despair, fear and hopelessness.
One such business is Paradise Gems of Tottenham, a small family run jewellers, established for over 25 years. They have worked hard to build a business and were well respected and trusted in their community.
Sadly, Paradise Gems was looted and gutted by fire on Saturday 6 August during the disturbances in Tottenham.

Hazel Farmiloe (daughter of founder Steve Farmiloe) called the Absolute Radio breakfast show hosted by Christian O’Connell on Thursday 11 August as part of a cash giveaway promotion that saw 4 callers a day win £500 to spend how they wished. Just before Hazel called, they’d given £500 to a Metropolitan Police officer from Lewisham (known only as WPC Vicky) to spend on a night out for her and her colleagues as a thank you for their efforts to keep Londoners safe during the riots.
Hazel emotionally told how her family had spent 25 years working 6 days a week to build their business and how they’d been left devastated by the loss of their livelihoods. Christian gave her the £500 without hesitation.
Then WPC Vicky came back online to say that she and her colleagues had decided to donate THEIR £500 to Hazel and her family to help them.

Christian then offered listeners the chance to bid to come in on the show one day, be part of it and ‘do what they wanted’ on air (and take away his headphones he’s used since starting the show almost 5 years ago!) if they’d support this appeal.
They gathered bids of £500, £1500, then £2000 until they hit the last 25 minutes of the show today (Friday.)
And that’s where we came in.

In the dying moments, and with the noisy support of the Craker Media & Bastows Family, Frank called the show and offered £2500 to help the Farmiloes get some part of their lives back, and to try to help them see that good people will help good people. Frank's bid was successful, and arrangements are being made to get the funds to Hazel and her family as soon as possible. We hope it makes even a small difference and helps make their weekend look that little bit better than it might have done.
We'd also like to acknowledge the sterling work done by Tottenham MP David Lammy, whose presence on the streets of Tottenham on Saturday to show support for his constituents and the Police helped many feel that someone in authority really cared about residents' safety and wellbeing.

About the show:
If you’re not a regular listener to Absolute Radio's Breakfast Show, let us sum it up: slickly anarchic! They are a strong creative team who work hard to be very involved with listeners, have encouraged people to get involved and who have a very loyal and active following on air, Twitter and Facebook. Find them at @OCBreakfastShow on Twitter.
Absolute people:
CHRISTIAN O’CONNELL: Head man. Funny, sharp, self-declared shabby dad but rather a cool dude. Loves Southampton FC, great music and good friends. He developed a background on local and hospital radio before heading to XFM and then on to Absolute. He's @OCRadio on Twitter.
RICHIE FIRTH: Exec producer. The butt of most of OC’s jokes. Hardcore Arsenal FC and pie fan. Known to frequent Greggs. He's the Snack Genius king, and remains ever patient and tolerant of OC's teasing. Richie tweets as @iamcaptainchaos on Twitter.
MAGGIE DOYLE: Travel and traffic/ production. Smart, funny, glamorous, Irish, and has a legendary Mum in Mammy Doyle. Gets stick from the boys. Was unfairly handicapped in the mobility scooter grand prix by being made to tow a caravan. (Yes, with a mobility scooter.) Mags works hard to keep order and is a heroine to every lady listener. She's the one and only @themaggiedoyle on Twitter.
ANDREW BAILEY: Newshound. The lovely Bails has a perfect radio voice and he works hard as head of news and as a lecturer in journalism too. He's a Liverpool FC supporter, so clearly enjoys a good laugh, and has a mischievous streak a mile wide - just go along to Beer and Cake Club and you'll never hear the news in the same way again. Follow him under his name @bailsbails on Twitter.

If you're on Twitter, please seek out the #helpHAZEL hashtag, and do get involved in Making London Beautiful by following @riotcleanup for news on how you can help local communities recover from the senseless actions of a minority.

London is a city filled with heart, soul, life and laughter. It cannot be a place of violence and fear, and it is up to us all to do our bit to make our city a place to be safe in.
Our thoughts are also with those affected by violence in Manchester, Nottingham, Liverpool, Bristol, Leicester, Birmingham and Wolverhampton. Be happy in your cities, treat people well, and cancel out some bad stuff by extra-specially nice to at least one person every day.
Be safe and happy.

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Derek Bastow 1934 -2011

Dear Friends and Family

The Bastow family are saddened to report the death of Derek Bastow, who died on July 14th 2011 after bravely battling asbestos-related cancer since receiving the diagnosis in October 2009. He was 77 years old.

He was a keen golfer, amateur inventor, and a dedicated husband, father and grandfather. His wisdom, humour, vision and dedication will be missed by everyone, but most of all by those dearest to him.

The funeral service will be held at 12.30pm on Thursday 28th July


Randalls Park Crematorium,

Randalls Road,


Surrey KT22 0AG.

Following the service, a reception will be held at:

Leatherhead Golf Club,

Kingston Road,

Surrey KT22 0EE.

A map showing the route between venues can be found at:

Floral tributes may be sent to

A & E Longhurst,

21 Kingston Road,


Surrey KT17 2DX.

Please advise Frank Bastow via or Niki Rosenbaum via if you will be attending.

If you know anyone who knew Derek and you think we may have inadvertently omitted them from this correspondence, please do let them know they will be very welcome to attend the service and reception.

Thursday, 14 July 2011

A sad day for our Family

It is with great sadness that we have to share the news that Derek Bastow, the founder of Bastows in London, husband to Theresa, father of Frank and Robert and grandfather to four beloved grandchildren, passed away in the early hours of Thursday 14th July.

Derek worked hard all his life, never afraid to ‘muck in’ and do what was needed to succeed or complete a job. He was diagnosed with asbestos-related cancer in 2010, and has fought the illness every step of the way in his inimitable way. He has faced the illness with unique bravery and has especially treasured every moment with his family.

Although Derek retired over 7 years ago, the principles he instilled in Bastows remain the foundation stone of the Family, and we work every day with these values in mind.

His wisdom, humour, vision and dedication will be missed by everyone, but most of all by those dearest to him.

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Bastows attain Investors in People Health & Wellbeing Award

Bastows are delighted to announce that we have been awarded the prestigious Investors in People Health & Wellbeing Award in recognition of our in-house health and wellbeing promotion programme.

We are especially proud of this achievement as the programme was wholly designed and developed by Bastows employees with advice and support from our external consultant, Stephen McGrane.

Our programme is focussed on responsibility, enablement, empowerment, information and prevention to tackle issues around ill-health before they impact on individuals and our Family. Our proactive and open approach has helped us create a programme that goes beyond compliance and is rooted in trust, care and understanding.

We are amongst the first companies in the South East of England to be awarded this standard, and with only three Councils being awarded nationally, it’s easy to see how fantastic it is for us to gain recognition under this scheme.

We have been delighted with the level of engagement, involvement and support for the programme from the Family. Without honest feedback and the great ideas shared, we could not have met the high standards Investors in People look for.

Thank you to everyone who has worked so hard to attain this award; to Frank Bastow for his determination to lead the way, to Stephen for his expertise and guidance, and to our assessor, Jim Illingworth of IBP, for his help and support.