Wall materials

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Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   Text © Copyright April 2009, Oast House Archive; licensed for re-use under a Creative Commons Licence.
Images also under a similar Creative Commons Licence.

TQ7855 : Yew Tree House by Oast House Archive
A basic photographic illustration of wall types, materials and finishes found within Great Britain.

❖ Traditional Materials


A mixture of clay, sand, straw, earth and water. Used in Europe since the 12th century, and popular within the West Country of Devon and Cornwall in England.

SX7264 : Clapper Cottage, Upper Dean by Adrian Platt SK8608 : Cob wall, Oakham by Michael Trolove

Clay and clay-bonded

Field clearance stones, clay-bonded and lime-washed. Illustration below shows Burns Cottage in Alloway, built in 1757 by William Burness.

NS3318 : Burns Cottage, Alloway. by John McLeish


Straw bales, usually covered in lime render. There are few straw buildings in the UK, but its low cost and high insulating values are giving it a renewed interest.

SH7504 : Straw bale building by ceridwen SN1645 : House above Cwm Degwel by Jeremy Bolwell


Timber frame (Half-timbered)

TQ7061 : Mulberry Cottages, High Street, Snodland, Kent by Oast House Archive SO0897 : The rear view of Gregynog Hall by Dave Croker

Timber cladding (un-processed)

TL8338 : Kiln at the Bulmer Brick and Tile Works by Gareth Hughes TR3260 : Cedar cladding by Oast House Archive


A form of cladding, typically over timber framed structures.

TR0033 : Weatherboard walls by Oast House Archive
White weatherboard. Traditionally used on domestic buildings.

TQ6271 : Oast House at Hazells, Southfleet, Kent by Oast House Archive
Black/Stained weatherboard. Traditionally used on farm and utilitarian buildings.

Lime Render & Plaster

SO3164 : Rendered timber-frame cottages by mfjordan



TQ9345 : Sheerland Farm, near Pluckley by David Kemp


ST7465 : The Circus, Bath by Oast House Archive


NY5261 : The Hollies, Main Street, Brampton by Humphrey Bolton
Dressed stone work, made into rectangular blocks with sculpted edges, with a smoothed finish.


TQ0210 : South Downs Flint by Colin Smith

Stone & Pebble dashing

SH3545 : Corner of ruined building by John S Turner TG2142 : Chesterfield Lodge by Evelyn Simak


NB5165 : Eòropaidh by Anne Burgess Similar to roughcast, used in Scotland

Slate tile hanging

SM9835 : Slatehung farm buildings at Cwrt by ceridwen

Clay products


TQ9464 : Cheke's Court, Blacketts Road, Tonge, Kent by Oast House Archive Also see Geograph article; Brick BondsExternal link.

Mathematical tile

TQ4110 : Lewes by Charles Rawding A cladding designed to give a brick faced appearance. Also called brick slips.

Tile hanging

TQ8750 : Mansion Farmhouse, Liverton Street, Kent by Oast House Archive TR0033 : Tile hanging by Oast House Archive


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