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Rail – see ‘Tilt’.
(Long Straw) – see ‘Roller’.
Laid above battens and under main thatch, used to adjust the tilt of reed or straw.
Twist of straw, reed withy or bramble used to tie a bundle of thatch to roof .
Solid board used as an alternative to turned gable.
The bottom coat of thatch. May sometimes comprise smoke-blackened thatch.
Bundle of tied, threshed straw .
Working platform hooked into thatch .
Reaper for cutting standing corn
Norfolk Reed bundle containing mostly bulrush .
Leaded gutter formed behind chimney
The first course up from the eaves formed by the bundles. The finished edge of thatch overhanging a gable.
Bundle of water reed 2′ circumference, 1′ above butt, usually at the tie .
Thicker end of a bundle of reed or straw.
Arranging the ends of the reed by dropping bundles or nitches onto board.
Side of window.
See ‘Apron’ .
Layer of entire thatch .
Topmost bundle of straw turned to shed water back onto the ridge.
Combed wheat reed
Straw which has been combed to remove the corn, leaf and weed.
Imported bundle of water reed 1m around circumference or butt, usually tied twice .
Substandard materials or thatch.
Coppicing or coppice
Woodland management whereby trees are regularly cut to encourage growth of adventitious shoots.
A horizontal layer of reed or straw laid along a roof .
A vernacular name for combed wheat reed.
See ‘Roller’ and ‘Bottle’.
The technique of pulling stems from a heap of material and aligning them. Used to form yealms for use in long straw.
Pushing reed into final position.
See ‘Legget’ .
A round shaped Leggett for shaping valleys.
First course of thatch at the lowest, overhanging part of a roof.
Six bundles of water reed .
See ‘Gable’ .
A goodly handful of steel sways .
Seed head on water reed Flag: Leaf on straw.
Lead or mortar fillet, fitted at the apex or junction between the thatch and an architectural element of a relatively impervious material. The flashing provides additional protection from precipitation.
A weave of water reed laid over the rafters instead of timber battens.
Cut length of hazel between 1″ and 3″ in diameter .
Bundle of gadds.
Hazel (Corylus aveliana)
Used for spars, sways and rods – said to be hardier than withy .
Thatching nail with a hooked head used to secure thatch directly to the rafters by clasping the sway. Traditionally this was only used in difficult positions on the roof, but now they are routinely used.
Handful of straw, bent double.
Types Pole. Push-up and Hanger.
a grooved tool that grips the ends of the combed wheat reed or reed and dresses them into position. This is often wooden and ridged for combed wheat reed and metal with ‘cups’ for reed.
See ‘Rod’ .
The flattening of crops in the field by the action of wind and rain.
Straw thrashed but not combed.
A ¾” galvanised wire or ¾” polythene used to protect thatch from bird damage .
Used to stitch on the thatch .
Bundle of combed reed of weight 28lb or 14lb.
Vernacular term for water reed.
Rolled and rodded gable end.
See ‘Spar’ .
Topmost bundle of ridging material used to shed water back onto the ridge .
Length of gadd about a yard long, used to fix sways on rick thatches.
See ‘Spragger’ .
Covering of supple straw or sedge grass, laid along apex of roof to bind and protect the main thatch. Types include wrap-over, butt up, flush, straight cut and patterned. Patterns include dragons’ teeth, diamond, scalloped, clubbed, herring-bone and crossed.
When the ridge level needs to be higher a ridge roll is used. This is a tight bundle used to build up the height prior to the finishing layer.
Peaked end at gable .
Type of soft straw used for thatching.
This is the section at a junction between the main roof coat and a lower ridge.
Marsh Grass (Cladius mariscus) used for ridging .
Skilled labourer .
Bundle of unthrashed straw – 8 sheaves make a stook, 16 make a stock .
See ‘apron.’ The layer of thatch out of which a pattern is cut into. This may be either surrounding the chimney or run along a block ridge.
First course of ridge.
A new layer of thatch attached to an existing one using spars and sways.
See ‘Spar’ .
Board for ‘butting up’ of reed bundles .
A strip of thatch worked from eave to ridge .
The thatching materials whilst growing.
A small plug of new thatch material inserted in a roof. Called stobbing or stinging.
Clump of Hazel.
All types of straw which may be used to thatch. Wheat straw is considered most suitable Straw bond: a length of straw twisted to form a rope and fastned horizontally with spars to secure thatch in place.
Method of removing grain from straw.
A ‘V’ section of timber fixed to the rafter to set the tilt .
a hybrid wheat and rye variety used for thatching.
The intersection between two sloping surfaces of a roof, towards which water flows.
See ‘Bottle’ .
Length of unsplit willow or hazel, less than 1″ diam .
Phragmites australis obtained traditionally from East Anglia now additionally from European countries.
See ‘Twisle’ .
Willow used for rods and sways.