The SPAB Blog

Working Party: Day 4


Our Working Party team welcomed 150 year 6 pupils from local Rydon Community College today. An important part of the Working Party is encouraging young people to think about building conservation in a practical way, to let them feel traditional materials and immerse themselves in the history of a building. The pupils really enjoyed their day of hands-on history away from the classroom.

Fixing peg tiles with nails and wooden pegs

John Russell and team explained the tools involved in constructing the types of buildings the pupils could see on the farmstead and then gave them the opportunity to try their hand at some traditional crafts. Groups of three split hazel to make wattle panels to be daubed with mud. After some hesitation the children enjoyed getting their hands dirty!

Making wattle and daub panels

The children were also taught how to use shave horses to make wooden pegs for timber framing and were delighted that they could take their hand-made pegs home. Medieval-style tiles with geomateric patterns were also being made in a shady corner. The pupils took them back with them to fire in the school’s kiln.

Examples of medieval tiles

Gail and Grahame Kittle, owners of Sullington Manor Farm, led the children on a tour explaining the long history of the site. The farm has a long history of people who have owned and worked on the farm; the children completed worksheets about the different characters connected with Sullington whilst sitting in the church yard.

Illustrations of the lord of the manor and a 20th-century farmer

Elsewhere on site our dedicated team of volunteers continued work in their designated areas, making great progress with the cart shed and the church boundary wall in particular.

Lime pointing on the church boundary wall

SPAB Guardian Stephen Bull and Scholar Joanna Daykin