no smoking in this bed and breakfast

Experience with Tradesmen and Suppliers  used by Craigievar B+B

The purpose of this page is to reflect our personal experience when working with various Edinburgh Suppliers. We are not recommending any particular Company or individual, nor are we suggesting otherwise.




Michael Ballam / Groundlevel Costruction

Design and build a garden pond

Hired Michael Ballam to design a pond. We were pleased with his design, his artistry and his professionalism. He introduced us to Groundlevel Construction who build ponds - Michael and Groundlevel often share projects.  Groundlevel tried twice to build our pond and twice it leaked. Despite their best efforts to fix it we decided to bring in a new Company, Grass Roots, to start from scratch (see directly below). We took this action because although we had begun this project at the beginning of the year, by this time it was high season and we could not tolerate further delay. We tried to sue Groundlevel to pay for the additional costs of bringing in Grass Roots. We lost the case because the work was seen by the judge to be an ‘improvement’ rather than a replacement.

Grass Roots

Re-build garden pond

Grass Roots built a pond we are proud of. It does not leak.

JW Decorators

Repaint Guest rooms

They were not the cheapest but we were impressed with their explanation that they do not cut corners as some Companies do, in order to achieve a low price.  We decided that it is worth paying more for better work. Their work was excellent.

Auld Reekie
(NACS Registered)

Sweep Chimney in Living Room

Great job. We brought them in initially to give us a second opinion on another Company’s work, Lee Longson (LL),  who claimed to have swept our chimney. But we were suspicious when we were told by LL  that we would probably need a lining around the chimney (costs around 500+GBP). We decided to get a second opinion.  Enter Auld Reekie whom we chose because they are NACS (National Association of Chimney Sweeps) Registered. Using a camera,  Auld Reekie were able to prove to us that the chimney was still totally blocked and it was not even possible to decide whether a liner was necessary or not.  We were issued a printed danger warning by Auld Reekie following their inspection.  LL insisted and continue to insist that they DID sweep the chimney the first time.  However they generously agreed to come back, free of charge, and spent an hour and a half removing material from the chimney - then supplied us with a Certificate stating that a liner was not necessary. Again, we brought Auld Reekie back.  Auld Reekie found still more material and swept it down into a large bag on our carpet which I witnessed personally. Now we have a chimney which is properly Certified as usable, from both LL and AR. The chimney does not require a lining. We paid two Companies to have our chimney properly swept but it cost less than if we had proceeded with a liner as we had originally been advided by LL.

Paragon All Trades

Replace bath with shower in guest room 3, re-tile, build new cabinet, install sink, WC etc. Also, work in Living room.

An impressive range of skills - great to have one Company that can do everything from electrics through tiling to joinery.  Work was completed on schedule for the price quoted (give or take a few customer changes along the way).

JW Decorators

Completely strip and re-paper and paint living room.

(See entry above) A reasonable job but they didn’t impress us as much as last time. Time-wise, they took longer than originally anticipated but the work was good and same as price quoted.

Gary Kerr AKA
Windows - R - Us

Joinery work on living room, plus new secondary glazing.

Did a great job on most of the work but disappointed us at the end by failing to put up glass shelves promptly.  Weeks after he had been paid and all other work was complete we still had no shelves despite many attempts by us to arrange a date - we eventually lost patience, asked him to deliver the shelves (which he had already purchased) and refund his labour costs for that part of the job. Another joiner will now put up the shelves or we will do it ourselves.

Mackays Furniture and Carpets

Supply 3 new suites, fit new carpet.

Great job on suites but broke skirting board during carpet fitting - still remains unfixed despite promises to fix. Also, failed to fit brass strip across room/hall carpet pending completion - we did it ourselves eventually.


Supply new coffee table

You wouldn’t think much could go wrong but a few scratches on the upper surface seemed new, probably acquired in transit, but we chose not to complain this time.

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