I intend building a one metre high wall with 4 piers at the front of our
house where it joins the public highway.
Thanks to Google street view I'm able to browse the nation's front
walls, and this looks like the kind of thing I'm after.
Presumably I'm not allowed to take the footings under the pavement, in
which case the brickwork will only be sitting on the edge of the concrete.
I'm tempted to not take the whole footings issue too seriously given
that the house itself was built without any foundations.
I would presume that the usual boundary wall legislation applies, i.e.
you can take the footings under your "neighbour's" property, provided
that you notify the neighbour in writing beforehand. The "neighbour",
the local authority, will no doubt wish to reinstate their pavement
itself - at your expense of course.
It might be easier to move the wall/piers back a few inches!
I built a low retaining wall with scarcely any footings at all.
The lucky thought that seems to have worked, as evinced by mild cracking
where I didn't do it, was to tie every brick to its neighbour with bow
And the curvature in the plan view meant it could stand the pressure of
the soil behind it.
All I di for footings was to lay concrete blocks on their side just
below ground level on a bed of strong mortar.
Actually neither, more like the first, but actually the second looks
alarmingly suitable. :-)
In essence, with decent mortar, you are creating a reinforced almost
concrete like structure.
That will tend to move as a unit, rather than collapse in areas
My mistake was in building the pillars first. I have cracks between then
and the wall.
Not huge, but visible. 1mm or so.
I did use a double wall, with concrete block behind, and capped with a
course of brick above finished (restained) grond level.
So final design is
1/. scrape away soil down below base by about 4-6"
2/. Lay strip of mesh and then lay first course of brick/coping stones
on thick mortar bed leveling up with scrap and thick mortar.
3/. Continue with layers of brick and mesh/mortar all the way up,
building pillars ''as you go'.
4/. Use quality semi-engineering brick to avoid frost spalling.
5/. cap with whatever. My advice is double brick wall with fancy bonding
(or cross ties every layer, every few bricks) and sideways laid bricks
on top. YMMV)
6/. Pillars built integral to wall,andb are 1.5 bricks wide, with
Yes. The weak point of a non reinforced wall is you can still push it
over. The metal will stop that largely, and the pillars and/or making it
two bricks thick will help.
as far as subsidence goes, its a non issue. The metal is enough to stop
it cracking, and any voids underneath will eventually fill up.
I think its the key personally. with that lot in tension at the base, no
way will the wall crack..as far as falling flat on its face..well maybe
dig down a bit deeper and do deep foundations under the pillar with a
bit of rebar sticking up, and then pillar round that.
Depends on how many cars you are going to crash into it. ;-)
I am a great believer in making thins out or essentially reinforced
concrete, with attractive brick or wood facings.
You don't need much of a footing for a wall like that, provided the
ground is firm.
I'd dig straight down on the boundary line and then, with my concrete
already mixed, undermine your neighbour's side by a couple of inches and
immediately fill the space with concrete to prevent any collapse.
Probably not allowed - but who cares?!
I agree - it will be practically impossible to stop some loose material
falling into your trench, and with a few judicious spade jabs you can easily
scrape out a brick-width of undercut, which will be plenty.
Dig down up to the paving in the street, about a foot wide and deep will be
Widen it out at the bottom, so that the concrete runs under a few inches on
each side, making it about 16 inches wide, bung in 3 inches of concrete and
build off that....you want 2 or 3 courses below ground so that you can do
your levelling up where it's not visible.
If it's not having headers, use stainless steel ties every four courses
Any type will suffice so long as they are stainless.
They go about every 3 (linear) feet, so you build the wall two skins thick
and four corses high, then lay out the ties, then after another four
courses, another set of ties go in.
If you can only get cavity ties, don't worry - they can go at an angle
across the brickwork so that they aren't protruding...set them back an inch
from the face of each side so that you can point the wall unhindered by bits
of metal poking through
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