Pointing Internal Exposed Stone Wall

The owner of an old cottage in Derbyshire wanted to add character to the living room by exposing an original stone wall.

Wall as first exposed

Wall as first exposed

 

Unfortunately, when she ripped out the plasterboard, the wall didn’t quite match her vision:

 

 

 

The wall was covered white paint and the pointing underneath was in terrible condition.

Exposed stone wall

Exposed stone wall

 

As the owner started to chip off the white paint, it was clear that the whole wall would need re-pointing.

 

 

 

Re-pointed exposed stone wall

Re-pointed exposed stone wall

 

We re-pointed the wall and it now matches the owner’s vision, beautifully setting off the woodburner in front of it.

 

 

 

Exposed stone wall

Exposed stone wall

 

 

 

 

 

Rebuilding brick reveal and archways

This lovely old building in Macclesfield had unfortunately been damaged by misguided attempts to repair it using modern building materials and techniques. Our task was to remove all the inappropriate modern materials and restore the building to its former glory.

The brickwork had been painted using modern paint. This was preventing the building from “breathing” – i.e. moisture had become trapped in the wall under the paint, rather than being able to evaporate harmlessly away when the conditions were right.

The building had also been re-pointed using cement based mortar. Again, this is totally unsuitable for an old building, as it does not allow the building to breathe.

The entire rear of the building had been covered over with modern paint. All the bricks around the windows and the archways had been damaged by frost and the expansion of moisture trapped under the paint.

It was necessary to provide support for the building so that we could remove all the damaged brickwork. We  removed the bricks and replaced them with reclaimed bricks in good condition, pointed with breathable lime mortar.

The archways were also replaced as the previous archways had collapsed. 

The cement had not only damaged the brickwork but had also caused the windows  to rot, because moisture was trapped next to the wooden sills. So these also had to be replaced, and painted with breathable paints. 

The building is now as beautiful as it was all those years ago when it was first built.

 

Chimney Rebuild

This chimney was on the same beautiful building in Macclesfield which we discussed in the post on rebuilding the brick reveal and archways. The building had unfortunately been damaged by misguided attempts to repair it using modern building materials and techniques.

The brickwork had been painted using modern paint. This was preventing the building from “breathing” – i.e. moisture had become trapped in the wall under the paint, rather than being able to evaporate harmlessly away when the conditions were right.

Once the paint had been removed, we could assess the extent of the damage. Sadly, the building had been re-pointed using cement based mortar. Again, this is totally unsuitable for an old building, as it does not allow the building to breathe.

The chimney was in a particularly poor state.  It was covered in modern paint and cement had been used for the benching on top as well as for the pointing.

Water had got behind the paint and frozen, causing the faces of the bricks to disintegrate. This made the chimney structure weak and unsafe.

Thus the use of the wrong materials had caused very significant damage to this building.

However, we were able to remove the inappropriate modern paint, rake out the cement mortar and benching, and re-build using lime mortar. The chimney is now restored to its former glory and should be good for another few hundred years!