What is thatch?

Thatching in the UK means to cover a roof with material of a vegetable origin such as straw, reed, heather etc. The type of material chosen used to depend on its local availability. This is less the case today.

How does thatch keep weather out?

A combination of its compactness and the steep pitch of a thatched roof, mean water runs off the roof by dropping from one end of a stem of reed to another. A new thatch will only ever get wet about 25 – 50mm down from the surface.

How thick is thatch?

One layer of new water reed or straw is generally 300 – 450mm  thick.

How long does a thatch roof stay new looking?

About 2 years. Most then turn a charcoal grey colour.

Will a roof require any maintenance?

A new ridge will need to be fitted every 8 -15 years and at this time the whole roof can be dressed and cleaned and any moss removed.

Can I have real fires?

Yes no problem. Chimney heights should be well above the highest point of the thatch. Chimneys should have an insulated liner which should be fitted by a qualified Hetas installer who knows the dangers of thatch.

Can any roof be thatched?

Yes so long as it is steep enough – 45 degrees or more is ideal.

What about lead work?

With the exception of box gutters and gullies, all lead work is dressed down on to the surface of thatch i.e. around chimneys. We can do this for you.

What do Thatchers do in the winter?

Carry on thatching. It”s a job like any other – 12 months of the year.

If you would like to know more about any of our services or to discuss any requirements you may have, please contact us:

188 Fairmile Road, Christchurch, Dorset, BH23 2LW

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