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My brick collection 

Over the years, I have accumulated many bricks, found in diverse places. If you think you can identify any that I haven't, then please contact me .

All pictures are to the same scale against a 1" grid. The sizes you see reflects the actual differences in size. The pictures are in several groups:

Wall bricks with maker's stamp   Wall bricks with no maker's stamp   Perforated wall bricks   Paving bricks   Odds and ends

Wall bricks with makers mark

Brick makers often stamped the bricks with a distinctive mark, usually in the frog (depression on the top), but occasionally on the side. I have identified many makers from the marks, but a few are either illegible, or I can't find any reference to such a mark.

Click on the images to get a bigger picture (or pictures - see right hand column).

No Maker Inscription Found Notes Approx size (mm) Click image to enlarge Pics
55 Accrington Brick & Tile Co, Huncote Accrington ACRINGTON NORI Wallsend, Northumberland NORIs are iron hard engineering bricks. (NORI is iron spelt backwards) 66x101x214 55.jpg 1
74 Allan & Mann, Glasgow .........ANN
Inveraray Half brick 85x105x? 74 1
60 Ibstock Brick, Ashdown Brickworks, Bexhill, E Sussex ASHDOWN Wokingham, Berks New build 2012 60x100x215 60 1
41 Binfield Brick & Tile Company, Binfield Berks [probable] BB • TC Wokingham, Berks Marking not as local book 70x110x230 41.jpg 1
37 Cadder Brick Company Limited, Glasgow CADDER Glasgow Burn marks, coloration 86x108x230 37.jpg 2
72 CHH? CHH Bexley, Kent Decorative edge 68x100x210 CHH 3
12 Eastwoods, Peterborough EASTWOODS
    63x105x217 12.jpg 1
47 JC Edwards of Ruabon J . C . E Nant Clwyd estate, Wales Bull nose 77x105x225 47.jpg 1
1 Eldon brickworks, Bishop Auckland, Co Durham ELDON Old works near Collier Law, Co Durham Black mortar 70x110x225 01.jpg 1
50 Freshfield Lane Brickworks, Danehill Sussex FLB Nuffield, Oxon In timber building frame (French) 66x140x215 50.jpg 1
44 Furness Brick and Tile Co., Barrow-in-Furness FURNESS BRICK CO LD BARROW Copper mines valley, Coniston Mould marks 78x111x233 44.jpg 2
7 Ibstock Brick, Ltd, Ibstock, Leics IBSTOCK Wokingham, Berks 1976 (~ Desford) 64x100x215 07.jpg 3
40 Ibstock Brick, Ltd, Ibstock, Leics IBSTOCK Wokingham, Berks,1985 Note holes not in 1975 brick 60x92 x214 40.jpg 3
2 Jones Bros. Pelaw, Co Durham JONES BROS
    75x110x230 02.jpg 1
66 Keymer Brick & Tile Works, Burgess Hill, W Sussex  KEYMER Pinkneys Green, Berks Ridges on reverse 65x101x222 66.jpg
61 (?Possibly Kier & Cawder?) K&C Inveraray On beach 75x107x223 61 1
14 London Brick Company LBC
  Key grooves, plaster 65x115x217 14.jpg 1
15 London Brick Company LB-01-90   Sand faced Fletton 60x100x210 15.jpg 2
16 London Brick Company LONDON
  Sand faced Fletton 62x100x210 16.jpg 2
75 London Brick Company LONDON
  Common brick with kiss marks on side 60x100x225 75 2
73 Middleton Colliery, Leeds (a) ME&Co-LEEDS-LTD-ENGLAND
Wokingham (Garrick Wood in rubble) Stamp on top & bottom 70x110x225 73.jpg 3
5 NCB Desford, Leics NCB DESFORD Wokingham, Berks 1955 note note colour 63x103x220 05.jpg 3
3 ?? ROBSON Old works near Collier Law, Co Durham   60x110x225 03.jpg 1
56 Warnham Brickworks, Horsham,Sussex WARNHAM
Wokingham, Berks   67x105x220 56.jpg 2
8 Thomas Lawrence, Bracknell, Berks TLB Broadmoor, Berks Different shapes 70x113x202 08.jpg 1
9 Thomas Lawrence, Bracknell, Berks TLB Broadmoor, Berks Different shape, size 64x102x218 09.jpg 1
21 Thomas Lawrence, Wokingham, Berks * WK * Wokingham, Berks Machine made, Asymmetric frog on obverse  67x107x222 21.jpg  1
11 Wealden factory, Horsham, West Sussex WEALDEN   Burns & distortion 60x100x220 11.jpg 1
13 Ockley Brick Co Ltd, Smokejacks Brickworks,Wallis Wood, Nr. Dorking <>-<>   Blisters, burning, kiss marks
Known as 'Double Diamond' brick
62x95 x213 13.jpg 1
26 ?? MWH     62x98 x212 26.jpg   1
53 Wealden factory, Horsham, West Sussex WEALDEN ? Distortion, heating 65x100x215 53.jpg 1



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  Wall bricks with no maker's stamp

Click on the images to get a bigger picture (or pictures - see right hand column).

No Found Notes Dimensions Click image to enlarge Pics
10 Winnersh, Berks Cracks & distortion 65x110x220 10.jpg 1
17 Cambridge London 'white' 65x105x? 17.jpg 1
18 Send, Surrey Pale, cement? 67x102x217 18.jpg 1
19 Old works, Lough Corrib, Ireland Uneven, light 50x80 x200 19.jpg 1
25 Keele, Staffs L shaped brick, 'blue'? 68x113x266 25.jpg 1
27 New Malden, Surrey Shiny 62x100x212 27.jpg 2
32   Facing 64x100x215 32.jpg 2
35   Broken 65x110x230 35.jpg 1
39 Wokingham, Berks Shaped brick 65x105x225 39.jpg 2
45 Cheshire ?Dark cheshire brick? Inclusions 75x112x225 45.jpg 1
49 Blea Moor, Yorks Probably made at Batty Green 180x105x234 49.jpg 1
62 Bramcote, Notts   75x95x?  62.jpg 2
76 Little London, Hants Excavation of Roman brickworks 48x?x? 76.jpg
77 Blea Moor, Yorks With spoil above tunnel 75x110x225 77.jpg 1

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Perforated wall bricks

  Modern bricks are often perforated. It reduces the weight and also reduces the energy needed to heat through the brick when firing it.

  Click on the images to get a bigger picture (or pictures - see right hand column).

No Inscription Maker Found Notes Dimensions Click image to enlarge Pics
4     Old works near Collier Law, Co Durham Sand faced 63x98 x215 04.jpg 1
28   ?? Wokingham, Berks, Berks Smudged edges 62x100x213 28.jpg 1
29   ??   Pattern on rear 63x100x215 29.jpg 2
30   ?? Wokingham, Berks Chamfered corner 62x100x215 30.jpg 2
31   ?? Arborfield, Berks Slotted holes 62x100x215 31.jpg 2
58   ?   Distortion caused by partial melting 65x100x225 58.jpg 1

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Paving bricks

  Paving bricks differ from wall bricks in several ways. They are normally much thinner and made of a harder material, to resist damage from damp. They have a hard wearing top surface, which is often patterned to help drainage and provide a better grip.

  You can click on the images to get a bigger picture (or pictures - see right hand column).

No Maker Inscription Found Notes Dimensions Click image to enlarge Pics
48 Springfield Brick & Tile Works, Rowley Regis, Staffs DOULTON Wokingham, Berks Diamond tessellated paving brick 50x120x244 48.jpg 2
52 Springfield Brick & Tile Works, Rowley Regis, Staffs DOULTON Near Frensham, Surrey Plain paving brick 50x125x? 52.jpg 2
36 Hamblet's Blue Brick Co, Atlas brickworks, Walsall HAMBLET Grizedale Hall, Cumbria Paving brick 72x105x220 36.jpg 1
20 North Staffordshire Brick & Tile Co. Chesterton, Newcastle-under-Lyme VITROS Keele, Staffs Engineering 'blue' 40x115x230 20.jpg 2
46 Sussex and Dorking United Brick Co, Southwater, Sussex SOUTHWATER EPSO Godalming, Surrey Text on side, smooth, hard 48x105x217 46.jpg 1
24 ??   Wokingham, Berks Concrete paving brick, spacing ridges 60x95 x195 24.jpg 1
78 ??   Wokingham Market Place Surface replaced in 2018 65x95x200 78.jpg 3

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Odds and ends

Pictures of all of these are shown below.

 Gauge work – Most brickwork uses a generous thickness of mortar to absorb any irregularity in te size of individual bricks. With the advent bricks that could be made to close tolerances, it became possible to lay them with much thinner layers of mortar. This 'gauge work' became a status symbol, because it showed the owner could afford accurately made bricks. The joints were often pointed in white to emphasise the narrow joints. The example I have came from a demolished house that served as the offices for a local motor business. I suspect the line on it is where something, eg a post, was attached to the wall, because the white pointing does not go behind it.

Internal colour – The colour of the finished brick develops during firing, and is normally different from the colour of the un-burnt clay. In most bricks, the whole body reaches more or less the same colour, but not always. I have some broken pieces of a modern brick that is red near the surface but grey in the middle, where the temperature was not so high for so long during firing.

Miniature brick s– I found a very small brick (53x73 x145) next to a demolished wall that had been built with them. Miniature bricks of this size were sometimes made as fireplace brickettes by several stock brick makers. This was confirmed when I was offered two more (55x75x145) from a demolished fire place in a house also in Wokingham, built in 1952

Brick souvenir – I bought this tiny brick (28x40x80) at Avoncroft Museum . This one was obviously made to be sold as a souvenir, but very small bricks were also sometimes used by salesmen as samples. If you think about it, carrying round a box of full size bricks as samples would be hard work. I know from experience of taking my collection to show people after giving a talk on brickwork . I found a picture of an even smaller brick sample here.

Brick laid frog-down – Frogged bricks should be laid frog-up, so the frog fills with mortar and provides a good bond. Laying frog-down is easier and uses less mortar, but the resultant voids in the frog provide a poor bond. I found this brick with the mortar still attached, and gaps showing the void.

Distortion caused during firing – Poor control of conditions in the kiln, or poorly mixed material, can cause the bricks to bulge during firing. For normal brickwork they would be rejects, but after the war, when materials were scarce, they were often used for garden walls. I passed such a wall in Oxford Road, Wokingham many times and happened to do so when it had been knocked down, and before the material had been cleared away. One brick has swelled about 40% in the middle, and the other has bulged about an inch at the end, with the protruding material partly vitrified.

Capping bricks – A freestanding wall two bricks thick normally has bricks set on edge across its width as the top course. Using shaped bricks with sloping or curved faces helps to shed rain water and reduce possible by water soaking into the wall. These can come in various sizes

Vitrified lump – Overheating bricks while firing them can lead to burnt patches, which sometimes become vitrified (turned glassy). The picture below shows an extreme example where about half a brick has become completely vitrified.

Cast of a frog – I was asked to help identify a 'very worn brick' found in a garden in Pinkneys Greem. It turned out not to be a brick but a lump of mortar that had teken the imprint of the frog og the brick below it. This included a mirror image of the maker's mark. Quite a bit of the red surface of what was presumably a soft brick had stuck to the mortar, giving the impression that it might be a brick (covered in mortar).

Click on the images to enlarge.

Gauge work found: Wokingham - Berks
Internal colour variation found: Wokingham - Berks
Miniature brick found: Wokingham - Berks (Rectory Road)
Miniature brick: Wokingham - Berks (fireplce 1953 Molly Millar's Lane)
Miniature brick: Wokingham - Berks (fireplce 1953 Molly Millar's Lane)
Brick souvenir: Avoncroft Museum - Bromsgrove - Worcs
Brick with mortar laid frog-down found: Theale - Berks
Brick distorted in firing found: Wokingham - Berks
Brick distorted in firing found: Wokingham - Berks
Capping brick found: Pinkneys Green
Capping brick found: Pinkneys Green
Capping brick found: Pinkneys Green
Vitrified lump approx half brick found: Pinkneys Green
Mortar cast of frog (CAPEL backwards) found: Pinkneys Green

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