IHBC Technical Bibliography
Basic Technical Advice. Brick. Building Construction. Building Defects. Building Types. Chimneys. Cleaning. Craftsmen. Damp. Decoration. Earth Buildings. Floors. General Conservation. Glass. Joinery. Materials General. Metal. Mortars, Renders and Plasters. Repairs General. Repointing General. Roofing and roof materials. Stone. Structural and Surveying. Thatch. Timber. Windows. Search. Return to main IHBC site.

Mortars, Plasters and Renders



Gypsum Plaster: Its Manufacture and Use

Authors: Andrew Coburn, Eric Dudley and Robin Spence

Published by: Intermediate Technology Publications, 1989

ISBN 1 85339 038 0

A useful and inexpensive introduction to a range of materials which are not well covered elsewhere. Written with a view to encouraging use of intermediate technologies in developing countries, but relevant to historic practice as well.



Decorative Plasterwork: Repair and Restoration, Second Edition

Authors: Don Stagg and Ron Masters

Published by: Attic Books, 1986

ISBN 0 948083 06 9

Useful, thorough and inexpensive textbook on the subject, although perhaps a little over-accepting of modern materials such as cement. Very good on the practicalities of craft technique.



Mortars, Plasters and Renders in Conservation, Second Edition

Author: John Ashurst

Published by: Ecclesiastical Architects’ and Surveyors’ Association, 2002 (Available form RIBA Bookshops: www.ribabookshops.com)

Probably the best overall introduction to the subject. Covers not just the practical use of widely available materials, but also introduces a wide range of older proprietary materials such as early cements, and puts them in their practical and historical context.



An Introduction to Building Limes

by Michael Wingate
Published by: SPAB

The purpose of this Information Sheet is to explain briefly the different forms of lime and their principal characteristics and use in mortars.


Plastering: Plain and Decorative

by William Millar
Published by: Donhead

Facsimile of 1897 ed. & new introduction


Rough-Cast for Historic Buildings

by Andrew Townsend
Published by: SPAB

This Information Sheet is intended to give assistance in the repair of old rough-cast render as well as suggesting its use for the remedy of certain defects sometimes found in old buildings


Basic Limewash

by Jane Schofield
Published by: SPAB

Limewash is a breathable paint for lime plaster, lime render, brick, stone and timber. This Information Sheet illustrates in basic terms the advantages/disadvantages of the paint, the ingredients and equipment required for its production and application, as well as simple instructions on how to make a limewash and apply it successfully.


Literature Review - Mortars in Historic Buildings

ISBN 1 903570 82 4
Published by: Historic Scotland

Review of the Conservation Technical and Scientific literature relating to mortar in historic buildings. The publication considers compatability and analysis of historic mortars along with the design and development of new mortars.


Evaluation of Limestone and Building Limes in Scotland

ISBN 1 903570 81 6
Published by: Historic Scotland

This report investigated and tested the qualities and performance of Lime Mortars from selected Limestone quarries.


Conservation of Plasterwork (Revised 2002)

ISBN 1 903570 41 7
Published by: Historic Scotland

Account of the types of plaster found in Scottish traditional buildings with advice on conservation, repair, restoration methods and specification.


External Lime Coatings on Traditional Buildings

ISBN 1 900168 70 7
Published by: Historic Scotland

A comprehensive account of the benefits of using lime finishes on the exteriors of traditionally constructed buildings.


Scottish Aggregates for Building Conservation

ISBN 1 900168 69 3
Published by: Historic Scotland

A guide to the availability and suitability of aggregates for use in mortars to match those used in historic buildings in Scotland.


Care and Conservation of 17th Century Plasterwork in Scotland

ISBN 1 904966 01 2 plu 4416
Published by: Historic Scotland

This Technical Advice Note supplements Historic Scotland's suite of guidance on the use of lime in historic buildings and should be read in conjunction with TAN 02 - Conservation of Plasterwork (revised 2002).



by Steven Parissien
Published by: Georgian Group

The Georgian Group Guide No. 7. The mouldings guide has a section on restoring mouldings and an illustrated glossary of moulding types and terms.


Hydraulic Lime Mortar for Stone, Brick and Block Masonry

by G Allen, J Allen, N Elton, M Farey, S Holmes, P Livesey and M Radonjic
Published by: Donhead


Building with Lime

by Homes S & Wingate M
ISBN 1853393843
Published by: Intermediate Technology Publications 1997

An approach to using lime. What lime is and how it is prepared. Tools and equipment. Limewashes. Lime mortars. Plain lime plastering for interiors. External renders and thrown finishes. Decorative plasterwork. Stabilization and other mixes incorporating lime. Substructure: floors, roads and lime concrete. Limestone recognition, testing and standards. Maintenance guidelines


Lime and Lime Mortar

by Cowper, A J
ISBN 1873394292
Published by: Donhead Publishing, 1998


Mortars and Cements

by Vicat LJ
ISBN 1873394268
Published by: Donhead Publishing, 1997

First published in 1927 by the Building Research Station to provide a classification of lime and a state of the art review of its various uses in building construction and repair.



by Sawyer, J T
ISBN 978 1 873394 83 0
Published by: Donhead Publishing, 2007

Facsimile of 1951 publication. Tools. Plant and equipment. Materials. Templates and appliances. Running moulds. Plain interior plastering. Plain exterior plastering. Interior mouldings. Exterior mouldings. Benchwork. Measuring and estimating. Geometry and drawing.


Building and maintenance guide 19: Lath and plaster

Published by: London Borough of Islington
Area covered: London
Associated website: http://www.islington.gov.uk

A guide to lath and plaster including advice on the retention and repair.


Plastering: Plain and Decorative

by Millar, W
Published by: Donhead Publishing

Facsimile of 1897 publication. Historical plastering, Materials, lime plastering, decorative plastering, Running diminished and circular mouldings, Exterior plastering, Modelling, Moulding and casting, Model and running mould making, Gelatine moulding, Fibrous plaster work, Reverse moulding, Compositions, Scagliola, Foreign plaster work, Terracotta, concrete,


Historic buildings: Plaster and render

Published by: New Forest District Council, 2004
Area covered: South East
Associated website: http://www.nfdc.gov.uk

A provides an information on the various types, problems and methods of repair.


Plasters, Mortars and Render; Practical Building Conservation Volume 3

by Ashurst J and N
ISBN 291397476
Gower Technical Press, 1988


Mortars, Plasters and Renders

Published by: Surrey County Council
Area covered: South East
Associated website: http://www.surreycc.gov.uk/

Advisory Leaflet 7: An introduction to the different types of mortars, plasters and renders suitable for historic buildings.


Preparation and Use of Lime Mortars

Published by: The Scottish Lime

Materials, making lime mortars, Site practices and skills, Guide to specifying lime mortars


Plastering and limewash

Published by: Essex County Council, 1999
Area covered: East of England
Associated website: http://www.essexcc.gov.uk

Advice on the maintenance, repair and conservation of plastered and limewashed surfaces on traditional houses and service buildings


Traditional building materials in Essex: No.1 Pargetting

Published by: Essex County Council, 1982
Area covered: East of England
Associated website: http://www.essexcc.gov.uk

An account of the history and art of pargetting, and advice on repair


A guide to care and maintenance of Stucco

Published by: City of Westminster, march 1994
Area covered: London
Associated website: http://www.westminster.gov.uk/

Provides information for the care and maintenance of Stucco buildings within the area including information on planning consents, suitable materials and methods for repair.


Conservation advice no.2 - Limewash

Published by: Mid Suffolk District Council, 1997
Area covered: East of England
Associated website: http://www.midsuffolk.gov.uk

Provides information on limewash including how to make it, its colour and application.


Conservation advice n. 4 - Plasters and renders

Published by: Mid Suffolk District Council, 1999
Area covered: East of England
Associated website: http://www.midsuffolk.gov.uk

Provides advice on the rendering and plastering of historic buildings including information on traditional details and materials.


Green build: information street 1 - Building with Lime

Published by: North Norfolk District Council
Area covered: East of England
Associated website: http://www.north-norfolk.gov.uk/

A brief introduction to building limes, their uses, the types of lime commonly available, and where they may be obtained


Guide to Lime

Published by: South Somerset District Council
Area covered: South West
Associated website: http://www.southsomerset.gov.uk/

General guide to lime


British standard Building lime. Definitions, specifications and conformity criteria

ISBN: BS EN 459-1:2001