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Brick Styles

Bricks styles can be a valuable way of dating your house. there can be significant regional differences as well as differences down the years. The Romans were probably the first to use high quality bricks in their building construction. It was not however until the 16th century that we see bricks starting to be used on a widespread scale. At first bricks were only used on a high status buildings and even then were used sparingly. Gradually brick started to take over as the most widespread use of building material.

Early bricks were not made of standard sizes and were made using local materials that affected both their performance and their look. In areas of high iron content bricks tended to be bright red in colour well areas with lime I'm in their local materials rather than iron are more likely to be yellow or grey. These local variations however are not purely local since with the coming of the railways bricks were able to be transported over long distances.

Colour variation also occurs in early bricks due to their being handmade and varieties of of the methods of production buy different local important factor in the colour is the position of the bricks in the kiln when they are fired and also how hot the killed is. For this reason bricks from the early periods tend to have wider colour variation. This can mean that the bricks in one building show considerable variation and is a clue that this could be a very early building.

Improved transportation through the improve railway networks meant that bricks could be imported from other areas to reflect a brick style and colour that seems more fashionable. It also meant that the colour of bricks could be mixed in one building in order to achieve a specific look or style for instance a building mainly built of yellow bricks but with black bricks used to outline features such as windows.

Brick sizes

In very early periods brick sizes were fairly random but have become standardized over time earlier bricks tend to be thinner and longer than modern bricks.early bricks were made by hand using moulds and so the old size determined to the size of the brick. As production methods improved bricks became more regular in size.

Brick laying (bonding)

The way that bricks are laid is also an interesting feature. Modern houses tend to use a style called running bond where all bricks are laid in the same direction at half brick intervals. In previous times random bond red bricks were laid completely randomly English bond where bricks are laid in alternate layers and header bond Flemish bond rat trap bond are also no relevant bonding styles in English brickwork.