General Gallery Before and After Gallery

Frequently Asked Questions


Q. How long does it take?

A. Depends on the size and intricacy of the roof as well as access requirements but the average sized roof takes 3-4 weeks for a full rethatch.

Q. How long does it last?

A. Wheat straw should last up to 20 years – may have to have a few repairs here and there.  Water read should last 20 years +.  Ridges need replacing every 8-10 years for a flush ridge; 13-15 years for a block ridge.

Q. Where do the materials come from?

A. Wheat straw is sourced from local suppliers and is locally grown where possible.  We also grow a few acres of our own.  Water reed is imported from European countries, most popularly Romania, Hungary and Turkey.

Q. Why do you put wire netting on?

A. We always use wire netting on the ridge to help keep the wheat straw (wheat is always used to ridge) and the lattice work in place for longer.  Sometimes the whole roof can be wire or nylon netted to protect from particular problems with wildlife, eg, birds, squirrels etc.

Q. How long does it take to learn the trade?

A. Simple answer is, you are always learning!  We both started off labouring for about 3-4 years and then trained “on the job” under the guidance of a Master Thatcher.  Increased speed obviously comes with time.