David French started working on roofs in around 1980 while he was working as a milkman. Working for various roofing companies as a casual labourer in the afternoons, watching, learning and reading books on roofing picking up lots of information and practical skills. It was during this period David decided he wanted to set up his own roofing company. With a potential 700 customers on his milk round David invested in cards and leaflets and distributed them to his customers while delivering their milk.
It did not take long for him to build up a good clientele offering a good service to his customers, family and friends. It got to the point when he had to make a big decision to leave the security of his milk job and go it alone. It was a difficult decision with 3 young sons, a wife and mortgage to support. It was June 1986 when he set up D. French Roofing. He bought his first van and started full time, work was going very well and he had to make the decision of wether to take on an employee. In around September 1986 he took on his first employee, work was going well lots of recommendations from previous clients a small advert in the local paper things were looking good.
It was in October 1987 when the great storm arrived when things started to get really busy, David had to start employing more men as work was non stop 7 days a week he employed his brother Stephen and a few more men to help with the back log of work. Everything was going really well, it was March 1989 we had another storm not as big as the Great Storm but still creating lots of work. In the early 90s things started to slow down, very little work, living off savings. David had to do labouring for a few builders just to make ends meet. In the mid 90s work started to pick up a little. He was asked by a builder friend to go to Nunhead to do a half day roof repair. This was his biggest break, while doing the repair men in suites started to appear asking questions. After a couple of meetings and discussions he was offered a maintenance contract as a sub contractor for a company called Botes Building.who were working for Southwark Council.
David had a very good relationship with the majority of surveyors and supervisors along with the council building inspectors. Work started in Nunhead, then Camberwell. In 1997 work was so busy his accountant advised to set up a limited company.
23rd December 1997 saw the formation of D&J Roofing & Building Services Ltd
New contracts were won by Botes and David was carrying out repairs and maintenance for Nunhead, Camberwell, Peckham and Dulwich. He also started to work on new build contracts for Botes Building with a large block in Weston Street, London Bridge being the first of many. Along with re roofing projects for L&Q.
In the year 2,000 he opened his first office and showroom in Lordship Lane Dulwich, it was from this showroom he started to carry out domestic work again.
David won a very large contract for Standage & Co carrying out lead roof replacement on Barset Estate Nunhead, he then won a major roof window replacement contract on the same estate replacing some 500 roof windows.
From this he won a contract for 3 new build roofs in Enfield one of them being owned by Myleen Klass the famous tv presenter.
D&J have carried out many prestigious projects over the years including the old Algerian Embassy London
It was around 2006/7 when David decided a roofer’s job should involve solar installations, as the biggest part of the solar installation is fitting the panels on the roof and this should only be carried out by experienced roofer’s as it can be very costly to rectify future problems.
D&J have installed thousands of solar panels onto roofs during the last 10 years.
As a roofing company they pride othemelves in being able to make a roof look nice with solar panels, and have sourced some of the best products and have become partners with some of the best solar manufacturers.
In around 2012 David started to add more energy efficient products to compliment solar and are now installers of Solar assisted heat pumps, Central heating management systems, infra red heaters, battery storage units, car charge points and solar car ports and of course the backbone to the business all aspects of roofing.
David opened a second showroom in Bexleyheath Kent going back to his roots of where he first started his roofing career.
D&J Roofing have gone from strength to strength over the past 30 years and last year’s turnover was £1.2million.
David would never have been able to do this without a good team of staff and many have work at D&J for over 20 years.
David and all his team would like to thank all past present and future clients.
D&J Roofing & Solar
Big enough to manage, small enough to care.