Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Lincolnshire barns

click photo to enlarge
I recently put variations around the words "Lincolnshire barns" into the Google search box and was disappointed to be swamped with results concerning the hire of converted barns for holidays: it has always seemed to me one of life's mysteries why people want to holiday in a converted barn. In fact, I was looking for information about the different designs that I see as I travel about. Growing up in the Yorkshire Dales I became familiar with that region's variations in barn design and I was keen to increase my knowledge of Lincolnshire's barns.

I didn't find anything of interest - perhaps the subject isn't very widely studied or reported - but I did come across a few companies advertising new barns. These are big portal structures based on steel frames with uninterrupted space below the large, spreading roof. Coated steel, brick, concrete block and timber seem to be the favoured materials for walls. Most of the old barns in Lincolnshire, those dating from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, are constructed of brick. Probably the most interesting are found on the "model" farms of the nineteenth century; buildings with well-made brick arches, steel columns, sometimes the owner's coat of arms, all topped with locally made pantiles. I've seen a few of these badly converted into holiday accommodation, though many have escaped that fate due to being Listed for their historical and architectural interest.

However it was the barns of the twentieth century that I was particularly wanting information about: barns such as the big one in today's photograph. It is characteristic of the middle of that century with its asbestos roof, brick side walls, corrugated steel gable wall and its wooden sliding doors. A feature often seen in this part of the world is also present in the barn, namely the gabled "turret" that projects upwards from the main roof. This appears to have a ventilation function though that's just my guess. Until I find the source of information about Lincolnshire barns that I sought but couldn't find it remains only a working hypothesis.

photograph and text © Tony Boughen

Camera: Canon
Mode: Aperture Priority
Focal Length: 45mm
F No: f7.1
Shutter Speed: 1/640 sec
ISO: 100
Exposure Compensation:  -0.33 EV
Image Stabilisation: On