Timber Framed Thatched Cottage

Welcome to this new blog which I hope will raise awareness of the pitfalls and dangers associated with repairing historic buildings and structures.

I also hope that it raises the general appreciation of quality craftsmanship, and traditional materials, which unfortunately is falling short so often in today’s society.

This blog will hopefully give a flavour of the good, the bad and the ugly with the aim of assisting those who are wanting to do the right thing, be it a craftsperson, contractor, home-owner or any one else involved in the care & repair of historic buildings and structures.

Contributions are invited from anyone with prime examples of good and bad work. Questions or concerns regarding building conservation projects are also welcome.


A C17th traditional thatched cottage with various unsympathetic alterations and repairs. New doorway and window inserted previously, roughcast render applied to cover up decayed timber frame structure underneath and flint plinth repointed in cement below.


Roughcast render laid onto laths covering the timber frame structure showing signs of failure alongside unsympathetic peppledash render repairs carried out in cement mortars.


Cement renders laid on wire mesh to cover-up decayed timber frame encouraging further decay.

SAM_6820Unsympathetic cement peppledash render and repointing to flint & brick qoins.



Exposed timber frame showing signs of structural decay and a previous DIY attempt at a restraining strap.


Sympathetic repairs on a like-for-like basis replacing rotten oak timbers where required.

Lath and plaster panel replaced using oak laths and haired lime mortar.

Wattle and daub panels replaced using oak staves woven with hazel covered in a clay/chalk/straw daub.

Brick plinth replaced using matching handmade bricks laid in lime mortar.

Removal of cement pointing to flintwork and replacement with lime mortar




We have a Grade II listed thatched cottage which has required varying amounts of repair and restoration over the last few years. Ray has a wealth of knowledge and expertise working with old properties and has provided invaluable advice in both the planning and delivery phases. He has been able to guide us through the expectations of the conservation department, whilst always managing to take into consideration our needs and preferences both aesthetically and practically. He is reliable, arrives on time, provides ongoing progress reports and liaises to ensure we are happy with the work and progress. Ray’s attention to detail and his pride in his work ensures every aspect is covered and we have been delighted with the high quality work. It is a pleasure to have him working at the house and he ensures all is clean and tidy at the end of every day. He actively communicates and liaises well with other workmen. We have always been greatly pleased with the work Ray has done on our property and would have no hesitation in recommending him.