Scotland has a long history of construction with stone, it is the most common material used in traditional buildings.  There is considerable regional differences in types of stone available, it is important to understand how these variations affect the performance of the building fabric and repair accordingly.

Conservation and Repair

Left to right : House of the Binns NTS, Balmerino Abbey NTS, Balmerino Abbey NTS, Kilmory Castle Bute.

Stone work on ancient monuments and ruined structures has practical and philosophical challenges. We have carried out work on nationally important monuments to stabilise structures, increase the longevity of the ruin and allow safe visitor access. Consolidation work includes stitching cracks and monitoring movement, rough racking of exposed wall cores, and introduction of metal supports for damaged structural stones.  In all cases new stone is carefully selected and worked to be sympathetic to the structure whilst still producing a ‘readable’ repair. We also install ‘soft toppings’ to exposed wall heads comprising clay, turf and plants chosen to match local vegetation and the particular conditions on the site. Turf capping provides long term weather protection and enhances the naturalistic appearance of a ruin.

Many buildings requiring conservation are in remote locations, we have considerable experience of remote working including many Scottish islands.


Left to right : Culross Palace Garden NTS, Moirlanich Longhouse Killin NTS, Hill of Tarvit walled garden NTS, Inveresk Garden NTS.

Replacement of masonry is undertaken where required to ensure walls are weather tight and restore the structural and aesthetic integrity of the building.  We carry out a range of masonry techniques including stone indenting, replacing lintels and sills, resetting and replacing cope stones, rubble construction and chimney rebuilds. New stone is selected to match the appearance and weathering properties of the original.  We also carefully match the method of dressing on the stone surface so the repair weathers seamlessly with the existing stone.  Rubble work has particular traditional styles which are replicated by matching traditional construction techniques. We also carry out ‘Lithomex’ repairs to restore non-structural surfaces or features.  This breathable stone repair mortar is colour matched to the original stone and can be an economic alternative to indenting. Lime built brickwork is  found throughout Scotland, the same skills of matching building methods and materials are applied to restoration of brick walls and buildings.  This includes salvage of bricks that match the original style and colour.

New Stone

Left to right : Forestair at Monimail Fife, Stone dressing.

New stone work examples include stone foundations, building a new wall whilst extending a traditional building, infilling an opening or constructing a new set of steps. In all new work we use traditional techniques to produce long lasting structures that blend well in their locality.