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Vernacular Architecture: A Brief Guide to UK Masonry

The UK is home to some very distinctive architecture and, on top of that, boasts some unique and extremely attractive masonry. Iconic Cotswold stone and ancient wattle and daub facades (and many more besides) are part and parcel of what makes the landscape so undeniably British; and it is these idiosyncratic building styles and materials that form our vernacular architecture.
Vernacular architecture, that is: “architecture that makes use of common regional forms and materials at a particular place and time”, is an interesting topic. Because it varies regionally, as well as depending on the historical period, there is a rich mixture of styles around the UK.
Here at Relkogroup, we have extensive experience in working with stonework of all kinds, and our masonry specialists are well-versed in repairing and restoring buildings made from all manner of materials.
Regardless of whether it is comprehensive repair work provided as part of our flood and fire restoration services, or light titivation to make the most of the wonderful colours and textures on offer, it is fascinating to see how already handsome stone buildings can be restored to their former glory.
Depending what part of the UK you live in, you will be used to a particular kind of “normal”. If you are in the north or the more mountainous regions of Wales, you will be used to slate and granite buildings, whilst coastal areas like Norfolk and Devon are home to pebble buildings, constructed using the regions’ abundant natural resources.
On the other hand, if you live in the Cotswolds and surrounding areas, you will be familiar with the honey-coloured stone so characteristic of their chocolate-box villages.
And if you’re in the Midlands, especially in big cities like Birmingham or historical towns like Stratford-Upon-Avon, you will be used to Tudor style box framing finished with wattle and daub, or the red brick houses of the Industrial Revolution.
These different building styles and materials really are as varied as the different pockets of the UK they represent. Some are hardwearing and manage to stand the test of time, whilst others are a little more delicate, requiring some extra TLC.
All are stunning in their own right though and only serve to add to the rich history and culture of the UK. And whenever they do need a little spruce up or facelift, you have professional services like those here at Relko, easy-to-hand.