timber framed houses by oakwrights

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the oakwrights country home, the quintessentially english vernacular oak framed house by oakwrights

A TRADITIONAL OAK FRAMED COUNTRY HOME

THE QUINTESSENTIALLY ENGLISH, TRADITIONAL OAK FRAMED COUNTRY HOUSE

 

Traditional oak frame vernacular houses have always been our core business and are at the heart of our expertise. Paying due homage to the skills and imagination of our mediaeval forefathers, these oak frame designs are based on the style of the vernacular oak framed properties found in English towns and villages. In general, traditional English oak framing is categorised into three principal styles – 1) large square panelling associated with the West and Midlands, 2) close vertical studding associated with the South and East and 3) a later and more rococo design associated with Cheshire and the North. However, these are largely generalisations and the designs tend to overlap (they can be further sub-categorised into highland and lowland traditions). Nor do they take account some peculiar local traditions such as completely rendering the frame in East Anglia and then cutting relief patterns in the render (‘pargetting’). 

 

Because of our extensive knowledge and experience of vernacular architecture, we are able to design oak frames that fit in with specific areas. There is no county in England without examples of oak framing and although some counties have less than others, e.g. Cornwall has the least, (even here - in Launceston) examples can be found. This can sometimes be extremely useful in persuading planners to grant planning permission.

 

 

CHARACTERISTICS OF A TRADITIONAL STYLE OAK BUILDING 

 

The principal characteristic of this style is that the oak is (usually) exposed both internally and externally. This is possible because oak, with its closed cellular structure, is one of the most durable natural materials known to man. It is both naturally resistant to insect and fungal attack and impervious to the weather. It requires virtually no maintenance and is one of the few materials that actually increase in strength with age. Internally the principal walls, floor joists, trusses and roof members can all be visible. 

 

A TRADITIONAL OAK FRAME


One of the great features of an oak frame is the magnificent trusses, and many clients choose to embellish their homes with one of the more spectacular styles of truss in fully vaulted rooms. Between the exposed oak timbers are the render panels or 'encapsulation'. These consist of extremely high thermally efficient foam panels fixed to board and set within the panel timbers. Because these homes are built, as they always were, of green oak, the timbers will shrink across the grain as they season. To counteract this we employ a patented panel system unique to Oakwrights. The panels are then rendered with (preferably) a lime rich render giving the exterior its traditional, quintessentially English character.

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