We use a whole range of Eco friendly and locally sourced traditional materials on our buildings.
The use of lime in old buildings as a base for mortars, plasters, renders and washes is important because of its beneficial breath-ability and flexible characteristics. Lime also has significantly better heat retention than its cement alternatives.
Lime putty is produced when quick lime, basically burnt lime stone, is added to water to produce a chemical reaction known as slaking. The resulting product being a fine white putty which, after maturation, is ready to be made into mortars, plasters or washes by adding sand or water. Commonly used on lath and plaster ceilings and walls and interior and exterior renders.
Hydraulic lime comes as a powdered product but is made in essentially the same way as putty but naturally occurring impurities in the limestone allow it to produce a set similar to that of cement and the ability to set under water. It is produced in a range of strengths for the varying requirements of different applications.
Lime putty is diluted by clean water to produce a naturally breathable paint alternative. Although basically a white wash, natural ocher, earths and mineral pigments can be added to produce an extensive range of colours.
The cob blocks used for our repairs are locally sourced and composed of clay rich sub soils recycled from landscaping waste. They are air dried to provide a strong and versatile material for use when repairing or constructing cob walls.
Clay sourced from site, if base conditions allow, is mixed with straw, sand, aggregate and water to produce cob which is then trodden in layers atop a plinth to create walls. Cob, while not wholly insulating, is very good at retaining heat which creates a heat store to gradually release warmth into a room making it very efficien
Split oak lathes are chosen over sawn timber laths, especially on ceilings because of their additional strength and durability. Lathes are the traditional method used to provide a rendering surface on partition walls and ceilings.
Natural animal hair is used to reinforce mortars and renders giving them additional strength and flexibility. Currently Alpaca hair is used due to it being readily available in the length required and its superior strength.