We're privileged at The Lapa Company to have master thatchers to call upon for the creation of our Lapa roofs, but what is this art form and why is it still used?
Thatching is a highly-skilled craft that has been part of building construction across the world for hundreds of years. In the UK it has been particularly prominent in the South West and East Anglia and is still used on many country cottages - and found on many 'picture perfect' postcards.
A thatched roof is a delicate balance of layered reed and straw, held in place with steel rods, wires and hazel spurs. On a residential building, it's unlikely you would see the inside of the roof, unless you're up in the atttic, but on our Lapas the internal structure is as visible as the exterior, and part of the skill of our thatching team is being able to create a stunning roof both inside and out.
On the outside our skilled thatchers roll out reed bundles, securing and shaping the reed to create the angled roof. Inside they are tucked to produce a single layer effect when viewed from beneath. Our Lapa roofs are then finished with a flush or raised ridge, a technique dating back centuries, and found on Lapas, cottages and farm buildings alike.
The unique and essential reason for using water reed is that the roof does not become waterlogged due to the reeds hollow nature and tight cell growth. Most thatched roofs are up to 12 inches thick and will form a very effective barrier against the elements for many years to come.
We add traditionally thatched roofs to our Lapas, not only because this ensures they are an authentic replication of the original African inspiration, but because this stunning coverage is natures own natural shelter and provides us with no need to find any improvement.
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