Its gallows may be consigned to history, but the roof of Lincoln Castle’s Cobb Hall is about to swing into action once again, thanks to the experts at Sheffield-based Martin-Brooks.
The firm’s heritage specialists have carried out a complete re-roof on the grade I listed tower, so a new walkway can be installed carrying visitors right around the castle walls.
Martin-Brooks removed and recycled Cobb Hall’s original lead covering, before fixing 90 square metres of new sand cast lead panels to the existing boarding. In keeping with traditional building methods, chalk slurry was painted onto the underside of the lead to help prevent corrosion.
A walkway will now be installed on top of the hall’s new roof, linking the north and east castle walls. The large round tower was constructed as a defensive structure in the 13th century and later served as the castle prison, before a purpose built block was constructed. Its roof was last restored in 1815 and from 1816 to 1859 was used for public hangings.
Dale Wright, Martin-Brooks’ contracts director, said: “Due to the age of Cobb Hall’s roof, it needed a complete overhaul before the new walkway could be added safely. Thanks to the experience and skill of our heritage craftsmen, we were able to finish the project in just six weeks, ensuring the hall will remain watertight and in good order for another 200 years. There is a great view from the rooftop and I have no doubt it will be a popular spot with visitors wanting to soak up the castle’s history and the Lincolnshire landscape.”
The refurbishment of Cobb Hall forms part of a wider project of restoration at Lincoln Castle, delivered by main contractors, Woodhead Heritage. The £20 million project is funded by Lincolnshire County Council, the Heritage Lottery Fund and the European Regional Development Fund. Martin-Brooks has already re-roofed the former bath house and is now moving onto the prison block.