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Building Materials for Historic Buildings

This section covers the selection and use of materials when repairing historic buildings. The use of authentic material helps to retain the character of historic buildings and in turn supports traditional industries and vital craft skills.

Buildings inevitably decay over time and will need repairs or materials replaced. However, sourcing the correct replacements can in some instances require considerable expertise and investigation.

Sourcing traditional building materials

When selecting materials for repairs, they should be compatible with the buildings form of construction. Consideration needs to be given not only to the appearance of the material but also to its physical properties and its future maintenance.

The following materials are covered in this section:

Stone matching
Provides help with identifying the correct stone and sourcing a supply.

Stone slate roofing
Information on sourcing stone slates for roofing with good practice guidance on installation.

Thatching advice
Guidance covering the regional diversity of thatch as a roofing material and its repair and maintenance.

Selecting timber
Information on sourcing softwood for repair work.

Sourcing lead paint
Explains the process to follow if you want to either use or supply lead paint for use.

Specialist directories

There are now a wide range of suppliers of many different types of material required for the repair of traditionally constructed buildings, such as lime for mortars, hair for plasters, hand-made bricks and clay roofing tiles and bricks.

Details can be found in specialist directories such as The Building Conservation Directory.

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