Bricks on the rocks

What does it take to restore an 18th century Ice House?

An 18th century Ice House at Worcestershire’s Croome Court might not have figured in Capability Brown’s design for the estate, but it is picturesque and sublime. The egg-shaped brick and stone structure, partially sunk into the ground, had an insulating layer of thatch that would have helped to keep winter ice from the nearby pond frozen in summer. Derelict for almost a century, the whole structure was restored with a £46,000 grant from the National Trust. Cotswold handmade brick manufacturer Northcot brick supplied its ‘Packwood Rural’ smooth-faced bricks to match the structure’s original ones. The fact that it’s open to the public is good reason for a libation – although think ‘over ice with a straw’ rather than bubbly...