Shapes of Buildings

Glimpses of  Countryside

Buildings Closing a View

Pavements & Streets

Timber Framed Houses

Wattle & Daub


Use of Bricks

Use of Stone

Stucco & Rendering

Tile Hanging

Mathematical Tiles

Painting Bricks & Tiles

The Coming of Slate

Glass and Glazing

Unusual Features in Rye

Cast Iron

Changes in Fashion

Shapes of Rye
Materials of Rye

Shapes of Streets

Glimpses of Country Gallery

Protecting Rye’s historic heritage
for future generations

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Mathematical tiles are clay tiles shaped so that the part of the tile exposed to view is the size and shape of the face of a brick.  They are fixed to a wall which has usually been close boarded.

No-one knows the origin of the name. They occur in many places in south east England and there are 18 houses with mathematical tiles in Rye.

Corners are always a problem with mathematical tiles.   A similar problem comes with windows.  Here the solution is to bring the window to the front face of the building and use the frame to cover the exposed edges of the tiles.

They perform two functions: to weatherproof the house and for fashion.  With new windows, doorway and a parapet roof, a timber framed medieval house looks like a brick built Georgian house.

They were also used on specific types of buildings designed for their use, notably cheap housing in Brighton in the early 19th century and school buildings in the Midlands in the 1950s where they were no match for footballs.

Mathematical Tiled Wall

Mathematical Tiles

Images and text by John Griffiths, Rye Conservation Society

Mathematical Tiles
Painting Tile Hanging