Re-roofing at Cavendish Hall

Landmark surveyor Steve Donelan takes us through repairs at Cavendish Hall in Suffolk.

'Despite Covid restrictions throughout 2020, we managed to keep some of our larger maintenance projects going with Cavendish Hall's re-roofing works starting in June.

At the beginning of June, a section of roof to the North Wing of the Hall and part of the stable block was stripped back, timber repairs undertaken and new underlay and natural slate from the quarry at Penrhyn was relayed. New lead work was incorporated where flashings and linings had been removed. Where possible and condition allowing, the original slates were re-used.

Philip Orchard from Whitworth Architects was the Principal Designer and 3A Roofing Ltd carried out the works. Philip has worked with Landmark for many years providing invaluable advice and assistance. 3A are new to Landmark, but have completed many re-roofing projects on heritage properties, they will be a great addition to our team of dedicated contractors. I met Simon Nightingale, one of 3A’s directors, at Cavendish Hall on Wednesday of this week to carry out our pre-contract meeting, he seems very passionate about heritage properties and is relishing the chance to get to know Cavendish!

Scaffolding and roof slates removed at Cavendish Hall

The scaffold went up on 1 – 3 June with works to strip the roof tiles starting on the 4. The areas in question were stripped by the Friday afternoon, ready for inspection by myself and the contract administrator and architect, Philip Orchard on Monday 8. The contractors covered the stripped areas over the weekend with temporary felt and battens to protect against the weather, which was a good thing because after weeks of great weather, it decided to rain most of the weekend!

Roof inspection at Cavendish HallAnton, site manager, and Philip Orchard, architect, inspect the repairs needed 

Generally the condition of the timber roof structure was very good, with only a few minor areas of decay. The tilting fillets at the eaves needed renewing due to decay as well as some of the boarding in the well area. Thankfully the cast iron gutters were in good condition structurally but less so decoratively, therefore they would need to be stripped back and repainted ready to be reinstalled.  The new lead arrived and all sections of rotten or damaged timber were cut out and replaced mid-month. The lead work could then follow on from this.

Cavendish Hall replacement roof slate from Penrhyn quarrySlate tiles from Penrhyn quarry

Re-slating could begin once the new battens were installed. We selected new slates from the Penrhyn quarry, noted for their quality and slight purple hue to match the existing. We will also be able to reuse a significant proportion of the original slates, thereby minimising wastage.

Cavendish-Hall-Exterior-Bell-700x50.jpgCavendish Hall bell and initials

It was good to be able to see the bell close up and you can see form the pics that Cavendish Hall is branded on the internal face of the bell, presumably in case of theft. There are also the initials B.G & P.G scrawled on the outside from 1919. Possibly initials of those who installed the bell.

Cavendish-Hall-Roof-Well-Repairs-700x450.jpgRoof well repairs


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