Christopher Keelty Thatching


Throughout his career Chris’s focus has been on the conservation and restoration of thatched roofs; his belief is that each roof is unique and, therefore, the approach should be tailored to each individual structure.

One of the recent highlights was to work on Tisbury Tithe barn which is one of the largest thatched buildings in the country, dating back to the medieval period. Another interesting project – a complete contrast in size – was the creation of four thatched grain stores at Marco Pierre White’s Wiltshire Hotel, The Rudloe Arms.

Chris understands the importance of residential properties in his craft's heritage and relishes the opportunity to apply his expertise to a variety of buildings. Alongside the traditional aspects of the craft Chris is keen to embrace the modern and has worked on new-build projects throughout the South West.

Working as a thatcher over the past decade, Chris has acquired the relevant carpentry skills to complement his thatching, allowing him to undertake any necessary timber renovations.

Chris started his thatching career in his home county of Surrey before moving to Somerset to hone his craft. During his apprenticeship Chris was involved in every aspect of the thatching craft, from the harvesting and threshing of wheat straw to the coppicing and harvesting of hazel and willow for spar making. As part of his apprenticeship, Chris also attended Knuston Hall to enhance his skills alongside other young thatchers and came away with recognised qualifications in the craft.

Chris is now based in Frome with his wife and young daughters and works across the West Country.