Monday, 3 November 2014

Rebuilding accident-damaged roadside walls.

The stone built roadside walls of the Lake District are regularly damaged by vehicles.

Time is set aside for the Central and East Lakes Rangers to repair damaged National Trust roadside walls, usually in Autumn or Winter.

A car recently hit the roadside wall at Millerground.
(Driver failed to negotiate the bend on the A592 and this was the result)

This masonry wall (stone cemented together with mortar) required a lot of preparation work before rebuilding work could begin; on impact the wall broke up into large irregular shaped blocks.

Time consuming work was put into separating the stone from the mortar. In the image above a wrecking bar was used to prise the top or cam stones apart.

Dry stone walls usually require a lot less preparation work because no mortar is used in their construction. In addition, no sand, cement or a mixer is needed!

With the top stones removed, a sledge hammer was used to separate the walling stone from the tenacious grip of the mortar!

Because of the height difference between the two sides of this retaining wall, scaffolding was needed. The stone and chunks of mortar were cleared back from the damaged wall to allow access for the scaffolders.

The damaged section of the wall has been taken back to where the wall is sound and is now ready to be rebuilt.

The scaffold is in place with the planks cleverly arranged around the big beech tree.
The next stage is to load the scaffolding with stone.  (Wynlass Beck is in the background.)

The wall is being rebuilt using mortar as it was originally.

The last of the mortar is being removed from the stones using walling hammers and cold chisels.

The lumps of old mortar did not go to waste. They came in useful as filler for the ongoing lake shore revetment work at Millerground.

With the wall now up to height the top stones can be put into position.

The completed work. Hopefully, for everyone's sake, it will not be hit again...or at least, not for a long time!

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