Harry Roberts - Master Thatcher
I was inspired to become a thatcher at the age of 7 when my parents had their thatched cottage rethatched. I became the thatcher’s shadow and would steal his hazel spars whilst I watched him work. I was mesmerized by the process and how it could keep a house warm and dry. Years later I decided that I wanted to learn the art of thatching and to finally discover the secrets of this ancient craft.
I undertook a placement with a local thatching company and learnt the trade by getting my hands dirty. This gave me the opportunity to learn the craft from the ground up, from how to prepare the straw, to making hazel spars, to the process of laying material on a roof to all the finishing touches and everything in between. A thatched cottage may be an English icon image but it requires the skills and knowledge of a master craftsman.