Brick continued to dominate construction materials during the Medieval period, when brick makers would often knead the clay with their feet.
During the Renaissance period, and the rebirth of classicism, Brick Renaissance became the building trend of the fashionable. Architects took inspiration from the symmetry and carefully-proportioned buildings of classical Greece and Rome. Renaissance buildings featured domes and triangular pediments, and niches with sculptures.
There has long been status in using brick for building. Typically, throughout history, the material was reserved for the powerful and wealthy – public buildings, churches, and palaces – and it wasn’t until the 16th century that bricks became more widely used for house building. After the Fire of London devastated the capital in 1666, most of the city was rebuilt in brick to prevent future fires, a process which took almost 40 years.
Bricks were made by hand until about 1885, when the dawn of the Industrial Revolution brought about the introduction of brick making machinery. By 1925, a brick machine was capable to producing 12,000 bricks a day, compared with 36,000 a week by hand. House building – and the need for bricks – boomed in the 1930s, and again in the 1950s. And with the Government’s claim that 340,000 new homes are needed in the UK each year, every year until 2031**, it’s booming once again.