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No corners cut to ensure that history lives on 12th century lead roof

2 mins

NFRC UK Roofing Awards 2020 Winner

Award Category

Lead Roofing


Full Metal Jacket Ltd


South Quire Tribune
Canterbury Cathedral

Award sponsor

Chandlers Roofing Supplies

chandlers roofing logo

In replacing the lead roof of the South Quire Tribune of Canterbury Cathedral, the fabric of the 12th-century quire could remain a safe and accessible environment for worshippers, musicians to perform in, and the annual million visitors to enjoy.

The existing cast lead was taken up and smelted down to molten lead where any impurities were removed. The lead was then cast into ingots, ready for re-casting.

Once the roof was ready to be reinstated, the ingots were cast to specific bay sizes. These were then rolled for ease of handling and taken back to Canterbury to be fitted using the traditional wood cored roll system.

Each bay had to be measured individually and cast and made by hand. It was then carried into place and fixed with a wood cored roll with the ends hand-bossed and dressed. Each time the lead was cast it was formed on a new bed of sand that had been carefully prepared and laid to create the correct thickness and length. Each piece was worked and finished by hand.

At all times it has been important to keep the new roof faithful to its history.

Full Metal Jacket South Quire Tribune

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