I. Water flows through London’s history, and it will forge its future too.
It’s no secret that the Romans liked the sweet spot surrounding the River Thames, in the South-East of England. And it’s safe to assume that controlling the crossing point on the north bank of the Thames influenced their decision to settle and build in the area; it was a practical and safe location, with huge potential.
As the Romans built houses and roads, the landscape changed and responded to the people’s needs; a London Bridge was built, and has existed in the area eversince. At around 50AD, they designed the Port of London, and naturally, the ‘Londinium’ settlement grew on the banks of the River Thames.
Londinium later became a major trading and ship building area for the Saxons, Normans and Tudors. In the 9th Century, more people began to settle in emerging surrounding villages; over time, communities amassed, and the UK’s largest populated city was born. By the 12th Century, growth continued rapidly, and this humble port proudly positioned itself as England’s capital.
Today, business, housing, educational and leisure facilities continue to transform the docks. Ongoing regeneration across East and South-East London responds to our growing community; as the skyline continues to change, the River Thames will remain our capital's lifeline. Water founded our capital, and it is key to its further development. Cue our Waterstruck bricks.
The Romans built out of necessity and demand, and to some extent, we continue to reshape London’s skyline based on our ever-growing population. And yet, unlike our ancestors, we now have a balance of choice and necessity.
When it comes to design, building materials and innovation, we are spoilt. Yet, ironically, water remains perhaps the most versatile and malleable material. When controlled by hand, it can act as nature's most gentle lubricant, or cleanser. And it’s honest nature can shape and enhance other earthy materials.
Take clay, for example. During the brick manufacturing process, clay is poured into individual moulds. Once set, the clay must be released, traditionally by sand or water. The chosen lubricant is key, as it creates a unique surface texture on the brick; sand moulded bricks have a grainy appearance, whereas waterstruck bricks are smooth. Neither is better, it is simply a design choice.
Here at UK Brick, we only manufacturer and supply waterstruck bricks. Why? Because, for us, the finish created by water tells an honest story. The water and clay combine to create unique subtle textures that cannot be matched by any other method of brick manufacturing. Waterstruck bricks are becoming increasingly popular; they look refined, and the versatility of the waterstruck is helping architects in their quest to reshape our capital.
II. London is not London without the rest of the world.
Like any global city, London is defined by its people. And London attracts some of the most interesting people in the world. The streets are shaped by a warm multiculturalism and eccentricity, and this personality transcends to the cities architectural achievements too.
Londoners embrace personality, and this character is influenced by our love of other cultures. Taking the best from our European friends, and being inspired by newness world-wide, is what makes London so special. And to position ourselves as global architectural leaders, we naturally take inspiration from extraordinary builds oversees.
Our Waterstruck Linear bricks are widely used in Scandanavian design. Examples can be seen all over Europe, and now London has begun to realise the potential of these bricks. 2020 Waterstruck projects are in construction all over our capital, and we cannot wait to see the results of such exciting, experimental builds.
1/2. So now for the interesting bit. The half.
‘Linear’ refers to the length of the brick. And since these bricks are double the length of a standard brick, they boast an extra half in length. They are sometimes referred to as long-format or elongated bricks, but either way, they set themselves apart from the norm. Standing at just 38mm tall, they have an exceptional form, and a design led feel that calls for extra special projects.
They’re not right for every build, but they make a statement in luxury housing apartments, office buildings, museums and University buildings. Linear bricks add serious personality to any residential or commercial project, but they are not for the mundane. Architects and housebuilders love them, and London needs them. So if you’re working on an exciting project, we’d love you to order one of our samples today.
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