Clay Dabbins | Vernacular Buildings on the Solway
Date: Tuesday June 13th 2023
Time: 19:00-20:15 (GMT)
Location: Online (Zoom)
Image © Alex Gibbons
In this webinar, Alex will speak about the history of Clay Dabbin, looking at case studies of repairs and new build work. By comparing and contrasting these examples, Alex will touch upon themes of community engagement and training, and will consider the value of this work in today’s building and conservation climate.
About the Speaker
Alex has a small firm, Stick in the Mud Conservation, working on vernacular buildings throughout Scotland and the north of England.
Spending his school holidays and weekends on building sites, Alex trained as a Surveyor, before deciding to return to working practically. After training at the Cascadia Institute for Vernacular Architecture, Alex spent time working on repairing earth buildings in Normandy and thatching in Somerset, before being awarded a place on the SPAB Fellowship in 2014, with the help of funding from YCCC.
Following this, Alex was drawn to the clay dabbin buildings of the Cumbrian Solway, with listed examples being lost every year due to lack of skills available to repair them. With over 300 examples remaining, mostly listed, he has been busy ever since!
Alex also serves on the education committee of The SPAB, and delivers training vernacular building techniques to Historic England, Historic Environment Scotland, and is a craft mentor to The Prince’s Foundation for the Built Environment. He also lectures and publishes regularly on the subject.
He will be starting a PhD in October on shared thatching traditions throughout the Irish sea, but will never be far from clay buildings!