Restoring a doorway

September 2017

Restoring a doorway in a walled garden at the beautiful Flete Estate in South Devon. The wall itself is believed to be about 150 years old, unfortunately the ravages of time have led to parts of the wall falling down, other parts of the wall needing complicated buttressing and still more wall needed knocking down completely. This doorway had to be taken down, the lintels replaced and then rebuilt, unfortunately the wall opposite this had collapsed decades before and had to be totally rebuilt. The picture on the left here is a 'before' and the right is 'after'.

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Dry stack retaining wall with steps

December 2016

'Dry stack' simply means a wall that looks to be dry stone but actually has mortar in place behind the edifice. I utilised this method to build a narrower retaining wall up to 9 ft high in places whilst tying the look of the wall in to various dry stone walls around the property. The steps inset into the wall were of dressed stone and tapered, with the widest step at the bottom (6 ft wide) up to the top step which was 4 ft wide. Behind each step I mortared into place granite 'sets' (a kind of dressed stone brick) to give more tread room.

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New steps in a Dartmouth garden

February 2018

This particular property in Dartmouth had very tight access which meant all sand and cement had to be conveyed to site by hand in small bags up and down many, many, many (!) steps. The view was worth it! The steps replaced some older concrete ones that were showing cracks and wear and the stone was from the house itself. Although building even and nice lookng steps with undressed stone is certainly a challenge it was one I enjoyed and the resulting steps look great!

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Dry stone retaining wall

March 2017

A dry stone retaining wall requires a huge amount of mass and this wall has a base that is over 3ft wide to support the walls which rise to 7 ft tall. It is built from dartmoor granite actually dug from the site. Surrounding a veg patch which measures 9 metres by 12 metres the wall tapers, with the slope of the hill from 7ft high to ground level. The first picture above, is another view of this project, looking at the back wall.