26. February 2018

Cembrit’s lightweight fibre cement slates improve on concrete tiles

Projects that completely transform people’s lives for the better don’t come along too often, but a recent job on the Isle of Sheppey, definitely falls into the ‘life enhancing’ category. Thanks to the hard-working team on a popular renovation TV show, a family now live in a brand new, five bedroom bespoke-designed house, built on the site of their original three-bedroom bungalow. Cembrit Westerland slates were chosen for their appearance and versatility by Mid Kent Roofing.

The project team included designer and architects, as well as hundreds of volunteers and companies, all of who donated their services, products and materials to the show. Mid Kent Roofing was recommended for the project and was keen to be involved. Rob Smith of Mid Kent, commented, “We had no hesitation in offering our services for such a worthwhile cause, and happily chose Cembrit Westerland as our preferred slate. We’ve used them before, many times, and knew they would tick all the boxes. I really like using them.”

For a residential property in a rural area, the dark colours, sharp lines and smooth appearance of the roof is really striking.  “We absolutely love the colour and materials used on the roof,” commented owner, Garry Ratcliffe. “The slates create a beautiful contrast against the green of the environment and help the solar panels blend in well and don't look at all out of place The new roof however, is a totally different story.  Not only has it obviously been installed to a design, colour, texture, profile and feel of the many sections just add to the overall brilliance of the house design.”


The roof on the original bungalow was made of traditional concrete roof tiles, and the weight of the tiles had made the roof start to dip in the middle. The typical weight per m² of interlocking concrete tiles equals 45-50Kg. In contrast, a m² of Westerland fibre cement slates weighs just 20Kg making them suitable for a wide range new-build and refurbishment projects. The lightweight Westerland slates have been perfectly installed by Mid Kent Roofing. A small but significant detail stands out: the verge slates have been installed properly. Mid Kent have correctly cut down a double-width slate to a ‘slate & a half’ to ensure that the slates are correctly fixed at the verge. With two rivets and three nails there is very little chance that environmental conditions will affect the verge slates, which if fixed incorrectly can be vulnerable to lifting.