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Linhay given renewed life thanks to Dartmoor barn Management Plans

— 23 Oct 2019


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Field barn set within stunning Dartmoor National Park

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Before: open fronted linhay with granite piers

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Before: corroded metal sheet roof and invasive vegetation

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Before: water penetration causing timber decay and masonry fractures

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During: replacement corrugated roof sheeting in progress

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During: mortar samples and test patches

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During: repointing to granite stonework

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After: repointing, new galvanised rainwater goods and roof sheeting

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After: renewed roof sheeting on existing timbers with new barn owl nesting box

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After: renewed roof sheeting above retained sound vertical cladding

Dartmoor barns conservation barn Large

Jonathan Rhind Architects were selected to undertake Management Plans for 19 of 23 barns in Dartmoor National Park. Most of the owners took the opportunity to go ahead, and Jonathan Rhind Architects are delighted that all of those that applied have received grants for the repair work to go ahead.

Projects are at varying stages, with some delayed until Spring 2020 to accommodate bat roosting requirements, and to avoid carrying out lime masonry work over winter. Some work has already taken place, and building work to this lofted linhay was completed earlier this month.

The linhay is likely to date from the late 18th/early 19th Century, and still contains its original oak A-frame trusses and lap-jointed collars. It would originally have been thatched, long since replaced by corrugated iron sheet. Barn owls use the upper loft.

Open-fronted linhays are a distinctive west country type of field stock shed, in which the cattle were untethered and allowed to wander in and out as they pleased with nearby water and food supply. This particular example was suffering from the effects of invasive vegetation and weather. The roof was showing signs of corrosion, with water ingress; invasive vegetation penetrating wall tops; and previous inappropriate cement repairs and missing pointing.

Having completed the Management Plan (including full surveys, specification and tendering) Jonathan Rhind Architects oversaw the completion of the work, with the benefit of the Natural England Countryside Stewardship grant.

The outcome subtly retains the character of the building replacing only materials which are detrimental to the building's survival and enhancing opportunities for wildlife habitats.

Work will be ongoing into next year on the other barns. Check back for updates on project progress and grant availability for future schemes.

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