Intro To The Barn
We’re coming to the end of our autumn project in Cumbria, as our work on Raisbeck Barn approaches a close. We arrived on site in September, to find the barn in a bad state. Located deep in the Cumbrian countryside, it was a small trek across the fields to get to the structure. The barn, on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales, needed extensive work which started with partly demolishing a wall. One of the last jobs this week was putting in stone indents in the doorframes as they had been heavily eroded.
Check out the video above for a little update on how it’s going (oh and why not subscribe to YouTube as you watch?) and the changes made. The south wall, which was leaning and looked set to collapse, has been rebuilt and lime pointed. The roof has been entirely reslated and we’ve given new floorboards to the little joining room and mezzanine.
As we approach the end, one of the last things on our checklist was stone indents. The barn is hundreds of years old so has taken a bit of a battering from the elements. You can see from the video just how forceful the wind was and how exposed we were. Combined with doors frequently opening and shutting, the stone has also weakened and eroded. The way to fix this was to cut out the eroded area and the stone around it. This created a perfect oblong-shaped hole in the stonework. We used circular saws to slice a cross-stitch pattern in the stone, and then chisels to chip it out. This prevented any careless cuts and made sure the surfaces were smooth and ready for replacement stone. It’s not something to rush; it requires precise stonemasonry to get the corners perfect.
Once the stone indents had been cut, a new section of stone had to be inserted. We used the same stone from on site, as the stone varied across the building. But for the doorframe, we used some of the original stone from the building in a better condition. We precisely cut the stone to shape, and slid it in place.
We’ll go back to the barn in a few weeks to give an official sign-off. But we’ve breathed a lot of new life into the building. So if you find yourself doing the Coast To Coast walk next year, keep an eye out for it as you pass through Raisbeck!