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Seaweed Drying Shed;Laverbread Huts, Furzenip, Freshwater West

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This single seaweed drying hut is the last survivor of a group of about twenty that used to be located at Freshwater West in the early 20th century. The huts were used for drying seaweed that was harvested by women from the village of Angle. The seaweed was laid out on the floor of a hut for a week, and once dry was sent to Swansea for processing into laver bread. The use of the huts seems to have died out by the 1940s. By the 1970s this hut was in a state of disrepair, before being restored. It was then designated as a Grade II Listed Building in 1995.

The hut is rectangular in plan with a triangular elevation at either end, supporting a simple pitched, thatched roof. Overall dimensions are c. 4.25m in length and c. 3.5m in width, orientated with the front (identified by the doorway opening) facing the south-west. The doorway opening is 1900mm high and 550mm wide. The ends of the hut are formed from vertically set boards, 210-220mm wide and 35mm thick, 14 at the front, 15 at the rear. Three partial boards are set over the doorway opening. Two further boards of the same dimension are set horizontally to reinforce the rear elevation.

Internally, the underside of the ridge is 2.65m above the floor at the open, south-west end, and 2.36m above the floor at the closed, north-east end.

The roof structure is comprised of seven rafters per side, 110mm deep by 50mm wide, set on centres varying from 600-800mm. There are 15 roof boards per side, set on the rafters. The boards are 150mm wide and 20mm thick with a 30-60mm gap between each one. Four sections of overlapping thatch are then laid on to the roof boards.

 

Sources

CADW Listing https://cadwpublic-api.azurewebsites.net/reports/listedbuilding/FullReport?lang=&id=16583

Information Board, Seaweed Drying Hut, Furzenip Point, Freshwater West

 

J.Whitewright, RCAHMW, March 2022

CHERISH PROJECT 2017. Produced with EU funds through the Ireland Wales Co-operation Programme 2014-2020.