The Driftwood Spars is a 17th century Grade II Listed building of an immense character. It is a historic building and an essential part of the St Agnes Community, as well as a World Heritage site within an area of an outstanding natural beauty.

The Pub is built of the local stone and the huge ship’s timbers and spares, from which it got its name. The building offers a wealth of history, having been converted from a tin mining warehouse, chandlery, sail making loft and fish cellar over the years to a hotel with a public bar.

The original roof was made of Cornish Delabole and Trevillet slates, which due to harsh weather conditions and extensive service life have fallen into disrepair.

The priority of the free hold pub’s owners and the Architect was to replicate the traditional roofing method, “wet laid” with diminishing slates from 18” to 12” inches, using modern slating method, that would be acceptable by the Cornwall Planning stakeholders.

SSQ’s Technical Specification Manager, Simon Johnson, has worked extensively with the Cornwall Historic Environment Planning team to incorporate a higher quality Phyllite into the re-roofing strategy.

Riverstone Random slate was chosen because of its impeccable long-standing reputation with Listed Heritage buildings, its superior performance in the most demanding roofing slate applications, as well as its cost and its unique structure and colour, geologically identical to the indigenous slates.

Random width in diminishing courses pattern was installed with sizes including 450mm, 400mm, 350mm and 300mm, and fixed with the “dry laid” technique using copper nails on a modern roof construction above the original timber, oak frames and purlins.

Riverstone Phyllite offers a unique appearance to the roof. With comparison to Delabole slate, Riverstone is considered to be stronger and provides better longevity as a roof covering material.

This extra length of time in the ground has evolved the original slate structure in such a way that its technical credentials – exceptionally low water absorption and durability – are second to none. It has achieved the highest classifications in the UK market.

If you’d like to learn more about Riverstone, or any of the other stunning natural slate and phyllite products SSQ can offer, please contact us here.