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St Helena Online

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Tristanians build an old-style cottage – with a flax roof

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Pensioners on Tristan da Cunha have completed a project to build a stone cottage in the style that was used in the earliest days of the island’s settlement.

Earlier this month, 40 men gathered to give the cottage a roof of thatched flax – the same kind that grows over much of St Helena.

The project took nearly four years to complete, because the builders could only do the work in good weather.

In May 2012, a storm blew down one of the completed gables, but the island website reports that the veteran builders were un-deterred, and simply rebuilt it.

The site says: “This house will become a live museum for visitors but also a monument for the younger generation to see how their ancestors lived so many years ago.”

Could flax roofs be the next green idea for St Helena? Read more in The Column

The Tristan Thatched House Project – in pictures (official Tristan da Cunha website)


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