Alan Jones says…
I was fortunate to receive professional training from 1995 and have been learning ever since. This has led to me being less involved with carpentry and more involved with thatching. As time has progressed the only carpentry I tend to get involved with now is the timber and window work associated with thatched roofs as there are no experienced architects or specifiers for sources of information in Wales, requiring me to sort out my own roof carpentry/geometry, specifications and materials – something I am very happy to do.
I am now sufficiently experienced to make informed judgments based on facts concerning regional styles and materials and I have swung away from using water reed on traditional buildings as it is historically almost unheard of. I am also becoming heavily involved with producing superior quality thatching wheat – the traditional material so commonly used here in Wales as elsewhere in the uk.
With close observation of materials preserved in historical thatched roofs, lessons can be learned about our ancestors farming methods and preferred crops. This shows us today how to recreate a sustainable /renewable attitude to how we deal with our thatched built environment, re-establishing the continuum with our farming past and linking it to the future, providing income in the countryside as well as insuring the knowledge remains alive.