by Jennifer Hamlin

Marley Eternit clay tiles cut roof restoration cost by 30%

The owners of a 16th century Grade II Listed manor house near Ipswich have saved 30% on the cost of their roof restoration project by using Marley Eternit machine-made Acme double camber clay plain tiles in Antique to achieve an aged appearance on the roof.

Located on a Saxon site, the manor house was built during the early 16th century and extended during the latter part of the 1500s. It was subjected to major alterations in the 19th and 20th centuries and last year, was renovated by its present owners.

A major aim of the 2013 renovation was to replace the entire roof which, although it had undergone a number of limited repairs with a mix of different tiles, was suffering increased deterioration leading to poor insulation and leaks at the property. The roof replacement consisted of nine integrated areas including the porch and dormer, and a section of Welsh slate.

Alongside traditional handmade tiles, architect Ian Malton of CAM Architects Ltd advised the owners to consider a machine-made clay tile, which would obtain a heritage effect with less cost and significant installation benefits. The architect recommended the Marley Eternit Acme double camber clay tile in Antique and after being chosen by the owners, 38,000 of the tiles were specified for the whole roof replacement.

The architect explained the need to closely match the original roof and its weathered appearance, but compared to using reclaimed tiles, the Acme Antique would give the necessary aged appearance with the superior technical performance and durability of a new roof. Ian Malton, CAM Architects Ltd, comments: “The house required a natural clay tile for the refurbishment and one that would complement the Welsh slate roof on the building. The Marley Eternit Acme tile was accepted by the Suffolk Coastal Planning Conservation Department and also met the client’s strict requirements.”

The owners estimate they have saved around 30% on the total cost of the roof replacement due to the cost effectiveness of the tiles and the ease of fixing them, as they require less cutting, resulting in less waste compared to traditional handmade or reclaimed tiles, which have to be rigorously sorted for shape, colour and size before installation. They commented: “Originally we had to be convinced that a machine-made clay tile would give as good a finish as a traditional handmade one but we have been totally won over. The roof looks beautiful and the Antique finish clay tiles still look old but give us a uniform and weatherproof roof, at a much more cost-effective price.

“If you buy an old listed property you are the keepers of a piece of heritage and you have to invest in it and look after it, so it will still be there for future generations. We wanted to invest in the roof of our Manor House with the Marley Eternit clay tiles, so it would be there well into the future for hundreds of years.”

Building contractor Barry Blemings of Heronbuild, Mendlesham, Suffolk, appointed G H B Roofing of Ipswich to carry out this large replacement project. Barry Blake, site manager at

G H B Roofing of Ipswich, comments: “We carry out many major roof replacement projects and it was noticeable how much quicker and easier it was to use the Marley Eternit Acme tiles because they are so uniform, meaning there is less cutting and waste on the roof but at the same time, the colour range allowed us to create the perfect blend to match in with the historical significance of the building.”

Sarah Jackson, marketing product manager at Marley Eternit, comments: “We were delighted when the owners contacted us to say how impressed they were with our clay tiles and we are pleased the tiles are helping them to achieve the lasting legacy they want for the building. We are increasingly seeing our range of Acme Double Camber clay plain tiles being specified by architects for use in restoration and heritage projects because the longitudinal and latitudinal cambers help to create a highly textured roofscape, which adds both character and performance, making this tile truly unique.”

Modern clay roof tiles offer significant sustainability benefits and Marley Eternit’s Acme clay plain tile range boasts impressive environmental credentials, with independent carbon certification, an A+ rating in the BRE Green Guide to Specification and achieves the maximum credits under the BES 6001 Responsible Sourcing standard.

Marley Eternit’s investment in clay tiles means that beautiful clay roofs are more affordable than ever, making them a real option for any project. With our heritage spanning more than 150 years, Marley Eternit has the widest range of UK manufactured colours and an unrivalled choice of fittings and accessories.

To request a copy of our new inspirational clay plain tile guide, please contact 01283 722588 or visit

For further information on our range of products and services just ask ME at or call ME on 01283 722588. You can also follow ME on Twitter @MarleyEternit. If it matters to you it matters to us, that’s why with ME it’s all about you.

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