The Materials Used By Kent Peg Roofers

Kent peg roofing can be summed up in two words: tradition and craftsmanship. At times these days, it can feel as if both are in short supply.

As we all know by now, Kent peg tiles are crafted from clay – but what else do Kent peg roofers use when building or restoring a heritage roof?

Traditionally, wooden pegs secure Kent peg tiles in place. These two materials (clay and wood) are the core of a traditionally made Kent peg tiled roof. But the art of Kent peg roofing extends beyond wood and clay. Today, a blend of traditional techniques and modern elements are used. This makes traditional roofing look the part, with a longer lifespan and better outcomes for customers, properties – and the environment.

Traditional materials – clay tiles and wooden pegs

The main event is the Kent peg tile itself. These tiles are traditionally handcrafted from clay, giving them their signature “imperfectly perfect” shaping and colour variation.

As well as the tiles, wooden pegs are an integral component used by Kent peg roofers. Wooden pegs are used to secure the clay tiles in place. Traditionally, these pegs would be made from oak or chestnut, chosen for their durability and resistance to decay, as well as their abundance around Southern England. Each peg is carefully handcrafted to ensure a snug fit with the tiles.

Modern additions

While these traditional materials are the staple of a Kent peg roofer’s materials list, modern equivalents are occasionally used for practical reasons – unless the job specifically calls for period-correct works. The use of modern materials is purely for longevity and compliance, and does not impact the look and feel of the roof.

For example, In some instances, stainless steel nails are used to secure the clay tiles instead of wooden pegs. Stainless steel nails offer exceptional resistance to rust and corrosion, ensuring the longevity of the roofing system, and are impervious to rot and damp.

Breathable membranes might also be used in properties where moisture is a recurring problem. These membranes work as a protective barrier against condensation, while keeping warmth in and rain out.


Is a “hybrid roof” like this authentic?

Authenticity comes from the traditional methods used, as much as the materials. After all, if our ancestors had easy access to the materials we have now, we can be certain they’d be using it to make their roofing, too!

But with that said, we go a long way to make sure what we do is right and as authentic as possible.

To maintain authenticity, we Kent peg roofers will aim to source handcrafted Kent peg tiles for all projects. For aged properties, we’ll use reclaimed materials to maintain the historical integrity of the property, and to match any existing parts of the roof that are not being worked on.

This can be a pretty painstaking process, and may involve salvaging Kent peg tiles and wooden pegs from old roofs, or seeking out specialist suppliers. Sourcing materials for Kent peg roofing can vary, based on the project’s requirements and the commitment to authenticity, and also the availability of period-correct materials.

If we can’t get them through salvage or from known suppliers, we to turn to highly skilled tile crafters – those who have honed their skills through generations. Kent peg tile artisans can produce tiles that are eerily close to the real thing, using local clays – even using the same kilns, temperatures and fuels.

The results are as good as perfect recreations of a brand new tile from 500 years ago. New Old Stock, if you will.

If the restoration is partial, these “new” tiles can also be artificially weathered, with a highly convincing patina applied tastefully that will better fit the rest of the roof.

Traditional techniques

In period-specific roofing projects, the use of wooden pegs remains a common practice. These pegs are often crafted by hand and fitted with precision. This meticulous approach ensures that the roof retains its historical character.

Authenticity is at the heart of what we do, and we’ll go to great lengths to make sure we achieve it – through materials, techniques and even our no-nonsense customer service.

Seasoned Kent peg roofers will carefully evaluate the specific needs of each roofing project, to balance tradition and preservation with practicality. 

Our aim is to craft a roof that stands the test of time, and honours the rich history and tradition of Kent peg roofing.

Specialist Kent Peg Roofer

Heritage properties and specialist builds need the right roofer. We’re one of the UK’s only traditional roofing specialists – still using time-honoured techniques and materials. To get a quote for a Kent peg roofer, contact us at [email protected]