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Old Leylands

3 mins

This beautiful country property has a roof made up of 25 intricate slopes. The original peg and nibbed tiles were in poor condition so the team sourced handmade tiles to match. The team also renewed the lead flashings, gutters, waste and down pipes as well as the timber soffits and fascias.

old leylands

Old Leylands house is a stunning five-bedroom character country home dating from approximately 1914, although once the roofs were stripped, it was discovered that the original part of the house, which had a simple four hipped roof, dating from an earlier period, with many extensions added over the years. With the majority of the existing tiles damaged or missing, new hand-made tiles were chosen to replicate the originals.


The roof is made up of 25 intricate slopes and four projections on the south rear elevation, with run-out gutters in between. The west elevation comes off at an acute angle with the roof pitch changing from approximately 45 degrees at the eaves, increasing to a 70-degree mansard towards the top.

The original peg and nibbed tiles were spalling, broken or missing, so the client chose Wienerberger’s handmade Goxhill clay plain tiles to ensure the new roof was in keeping with the building’s character. To meet the client’s requirement for eco-friendly insulation appropriate for old buildings, the team laid sheep’s wool to a total depth of 300 mm over the horizontal ceilings, with a 50mm air gap was left to the underside of the boarding at the sloping ceilings.

old leylands roof workmanship


The Goxhill tiles were twice nailed with 40 mm alloy nails to all perimeters and local areas, and in every fourth course to general areas. At the verge, gable tiles were laid in alternate courses and bedded on to a plain tile under-cloak, while at the valleys, plain valley tiles were laid in every course, with tiling cut to both sides and Code 4 lead saddles laid at the top of valleys. At the hips, bonnet hip tiles were laid to the slopes of equal pitches, bedded with mortar and fixed with 100 mm slab nails. Rotten timber facias and boarding on the triangular flat roof were renewed with treated softwood timber, as were the structural wall plate and ceiling joists. A stone mason was employed to replace the stone copings where they had corroded beyond repair, re-bedding and re-pointing the copings as necessary.


Wienerberger Goxhill handmade dark chestnut clay plain tiles; Proctor Roofshield vapour permeable membranes; 25 x 38 mm gold battens graded to BS 5534; Therma-fleece sheeps wool.

At a glance

  • Project: Old Leylands
  • Roofing Awards 2019 Winner: Roof Tiling
  • Award Sponsor: ECIC
  • Location: Crowborough
  • Roof Covering: Handmade clay plain tiles
  • Client: Private
  • Roofing Contractor: Richard Soan Roofing Services
  • Product supplier: Wienerberger

About Richard Soan Roofing Services

Established in 1988, Richard Soan Roofing Services is a family roofing contractor, undertaking residential, commercial and industrial roofing. It is also Heritage-Approved by the National Federation of Roofing Contractors.

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