"Engineering"? roof tiles - anyone found a (non-roof) use for them

The previous owner of our property took down a tobacco drying barn which means we have great piles of what I think are called “engineering” roof tiles. ie the flat-ish ones with odd wavy lumps so one can be hung from another.

I wondered if anyone has found a way to use them? I’d thought about building them up as low walls round the beds of a potager, but can’t find any way to make them stack sensibly. They just make an ugly mess that would need masses of mortar between them.

Seems a shame to waste them.

Any ideas/ suggestions much appreciated. Thanks.

Why not pass the word, locally… someone might be glad to take them off your hands, for their own project…

just a thought.

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In Roumazieres Loubert (near where we live) there are the tile factories which have been in place for a considerable period of time and local people (who know about tiles) have produced some fantastic looking walls with the machine engineered ones.
If we go into RL later, we’ll take a photo for you. From memory, there is a considerable layer of mortar between courses to make it work…

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We use them vertically around various plant beds, on edge of pond to make planting areas that are protected from the fish, for weighing down the tarp on the wood stack, and so on. Useful to have them.

If you have lots you could be more ambitious

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A google street view of the tile wall for now…

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@JJones Oh wow Jane, that’s stunning! Have you mortared them together? Or packed earth between them or something?

@Graham_Lees That’s just brilliant Graham. Thanks so much both of you. I just need to be more courageous.

Not me! Just a photo, but looking at it blown-up I think just earth has been used. For the wall what you can’t tell is whether they carefully worked out where to drill holes and then used a reinforcing bar to stabilise it.

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The street view photo up close…


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@Graham_Lees @JJones Thanks Graham and Jane - given that I fancy using them round our potager beds, I think I’ll try packing them in with earth and some herbs with maybe a bit of mortar at the corners to stabilise them.

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@spj That’s a great idea. Throw a handful of Wallflower and Nasturtium seeds onto the finished structure and you’ll soon have a colourful wall as well as being able to use the young Nasturtium leaves in salads.

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My front wall

People round Roumazieres-Loubert also crush them and use instead of gravel for paths.

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@Thanks Nigel, just amazing. I’m so glad I asked. The mistake I’ve been making is trying somehow to interlock them. Just laying them side by side with mortar and earth between them will work really well.

Outbuilding made of tiles

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@22pilgrim We love Nieuil, it’s is a lovely place and not very far from us on the outskirts of Suaux. We enjoy the various foire throughout the year and the restaurant in the centre of the village which featured in a recent UK TV series…

Graham was that the house in the sun on Ch 4.? A friend of mine said they are the reject tiles sold off cheaply that the locals to RL used cart away by the cartload when they were building something (incl) houses.

Hi Roger, good to see you back :+1:
It was actually A new Life in the Sun which followed expats in France and Spain setting up businesses and how they got on doing so. The epsisode I referred to was the one with the couple setting up a business hiring out bouncy castles - they hired one out for a wedding celebration at the bar in Nieuil…
Those tiles are super hard and extremely good for creating driveways as well as walls - far better than the canal roof tile variety which crumble to dust very easily. The tiles from Roumaz are shipped the world over - I seem to recall someone on here (or maybe it was the now defunct Anglo-Info web site everyone loved to hate) who expressed surprise at the pan-tiles on his roof in UK were stamped Roumazières. The clay exhibition in Roumaz (every two years) featured a few years ago some of the ‘old boys’ of the tile factory throwing clay into the ancient tile moulds and firing them. Fascinating stuff!

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La Cassotte?

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Absolutely Nigel. Had some very nice lunches there over the 10 years or so we have been living in 16.