Patchy brickwork

Further to the discussion about the Tea Factory's patchy brickwork, BC dropped an email to Lewisham Council's planning department asking their view on the matter and a chatty and helpful bloke called Chris Brodie has been in touch to elaborate.

The building was originally built in the post-War period for a company which had been bombed out of central London and decided to re-locate. Many similar buildings were constructed at the time, but they are becoming increasingly scarce, so, despite the fact that the materials used weren't of the highest standard, the council was keen to preserve the original historic fabric.

This is relevant when it comes to the choice of bricks for the contemporary extension because, unusually, lower quality materials were deliberately chosen in order to be as similar as possible to the existing brickwork.

Mr Brodie further added that, as the structure isn't a listed building, the council is limited in the extent to which it can specify materials and craft standards. Planners saw samples of the bricks before they were used and were satisfied that they would weather into a satisfactory shade over a period of years. This is also the view of the architect involved in the project, to whom Mr Brodie has spoken about our email.

Despite our initial concern, BC is willing to take the council and the architect on trust in their assertion that weathering should be satisfactory - time will tell! But what do our readers think?