Natural lime mortars are sustainable, environmentally friendly and extremely durable. Lime mortar provides an essential role in the construction of many period buildings. Lime mortar can withstand a certain amount of movement without cracking as it is softer and more flexible than stone, cob or brick. Due to lime's long lasting and porous properties, moisture can evaporate and the walls are able to breathe.
However, dense cement mortars can damage old traditional buildings as they are hard and less porous than lime. Cracks can occur if water gets behind cement renders and is unable to escape causing decay.
"We can help bring your property back to life, using lime will help your home to breathe again."
Lime was a common binder for plasters, mortars, renders and washes before 1920. Today more and more alternative materials are being used such as gypsum plasters, Portland cement and plastic paints. These materials can damage old buildings as they do not allow buildings to breathe unlike lime based products causing damp & mould which can cause health problems.
Before 1920, houses often had a traditional finish and lime plaster was used.
Its primary function was to protect against the weather, but it could also disguise the method of construction or make the building appear to be of a more prestigious material.
Until the 18th century the use of render, particularly for some buildings, was wide spread and common, and its historical application is often underestimated. Renders were applied to a wide variety of backgrounds, from mixed, uncoursed rubble, to good qulity ashlar or brickwork, as well as to external lathwork, cob and wattlework. Render, coloured or textured to resemble stone, was also applied to freestanding features, such as columns or balusters, made of brick or tiles.