The restoration of Llwyn Celyn

Our most complex restoration to date

Llwyn Celyn’s restoration took almost three years on site, and required the full range of professional and traditional craft skills. A structural engineer played an essential role: dropped roof trusses were winched back into place and foundations underpinned.

Walls were consolidated not just by stone repairs and repointing in lime mortar, but also by drilling to insert countless invisible Cintec ties. Extensive drainage works were carried out, to allow water runoff to flow more easily and harmlessly down this steep site.

Philosophy of repair

How Landmark begins a restoration

How do you turn a derelict building into a wonderful place to stay? Before we embark on a restoration, our team have to come up with a philosophy of repair - an overarching statement or aim that we measure our restoration decisions against. The agreed philosophy retained as much original fabric in the main house as possible, gently returning it to its appearance c. 1700 when the hall had just been ciled over and the chimneystack inserted - its period of greatest historic significance. This meant the reversal of a few 19th and 20th century changes but little else. 

In November 2014...

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Repairing the historic roof

Stripping the roof tile by tile

The two-year restoration project involved many skilled craftsmen and engineers, and saw traditional craft skills passed on to apprentices and visiting groups. The roof of the farm house had to be entirely removed and replaced. Tiles were guided down wooden slides and carefully statcked up. Some were salvaged and re-used; new ones were quarried in the adjacent Olchon Valley and beautifully laid in dimishing courses. The retiled roof comes to a weight of around 58 tonnes. 

Click the red button below to see Project Manager Richard Burton...

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Using lime mortar for repair

Treating the buildings with honesty and respect

The farm house and the surrounding buildings - including the beast house and threshing barn - tell a story of the evolution of habitation and farming practice. Our project to conserve and repair the site needed to take into account the range of both historic and future uses, and ensure that we treat the buildings with honesty and respect.

Preserving the surface texture of the site is critical to this process. The repair of the fabric of the buildings - the stone, mortar and any external renders - is done with appropiate lime mortars and materials. Nigel Tarvis from Ty-Mawr shows us how close analysis of the original building materials can help to define how repair work is approached.

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