Friday, 23 October 2015
It's called a cruck cottage, because of the shape of the beams. The word comes from Middle English crok(e), from Old Norse krāka, meaning "hook". This is the same stem as crooked, or a shepherd's crook (or cruck) which has a curved handle.
This type of construction consists of long, generally naturally curved, timber beams that lean inwards and form the ridge of the roof. These posts are then secured by a horizontal beam forming an "A" shape.
The wall was discovered in 1971 during demolition of two cottages that once stood on the site. It is now the outer wall of the Wirksworth Brewery building.
There are actually several cruck cottages in the area of Derbyshire and Leicestershire and they are relatively easy to spot in older houses.