Exterior paving is used on patio areas, pathways, in courtyards and on driveways.

With choices as far-ranging as reclaimed Victorian paving blocks, York stone flagstones or new Indian flagstones and contemporary porcelain paving, it can be difficult to know what is best suited to your property and circumstances. In this article we explain the different types of paving that we stock and where they could be used:

Blue Victorian Paving:

All paving can be mixed and matched depending on personal preference. However, if you want to stick to paving that will match your property here are some tips. Victorian and Edwardian properties, built between 1850 and 1910 often used blue brick pavers for pathways and back yards. These could be smooth pavers, diamond pavers or stable types with 2, 4, 6 or 8 chocolate bar style squares. Stable bar pavers are also heavy-duty so suitable for use on driveways. All blue pavers are non-slip, therefore useful in shady or north-facing areas. As long as the joints are not liquid cement grouted they won’t attract algae or moss. Blue pavers that are over 65mm thick can be used in driveways or parking areas and are resistant to oil spills. 

Yorkstone Paving:

Yorkstone is quarried from the north of England and has been used inside and outside properties for centuries. Because it’s made of sandstone, it’s incredibly hard-wearing and can be extracted in much larger sizes than other stone. Because of this, it is often used on terraces and patios with thicker slabs also suitable for driveways. If Yorkstone is used in shady or north-facing areas it will need regular power washing to prevent algae build-up which causes it to become very slippery when wet.

Reclaimed Cobbles:

Reclaimed cobbles have also been used for centuries in properties and towns. They are most commonly made of granite although much larger sizes of cobble may be made of gritstone. The colour depends on their provenance with silvery shades coming from Cornwall and pinks and reds coming from Leicestershire. Cobbles were traditionally used in high traffic and heavy turning areas such as driveways and turning yards. They are also perfect for steeply sloping driveways as they help with grip and braking. Gravel drives can benefit from cobble edging, with the cobbles helping to channel water into drains and to prevent the gravel being washed away. Like blue bricks, they are non-porous so don’t attract algae and are the hardest wearing and highest load-bearing of all paving types.

New Cobble and Setts:

New Granite Cobbles and Setts usually come from China or Portugal with less colour variation than cobbles. They feature many of the same benefits as cobbles but the overall look is more angular and not as soft and rounded as the worn and reclaimed stones. Be aware of sharp edges when using them as kerbs. Setts must be laid on a 100mm concrete base for vehicle traffic areas.

New Indian stone cobbles and setts vary widely in colours and sizes. Due to their versatility are one of our biggest sellers. They vary widely in colours and sizes to match your paving but are usually 30-50mm in depth so more suitable for foot traffic only unless they are laid on a bed of concrete. They can be used to form an attractive border alongside our new Indian paving or break it up into sections. You can see an example of this in our display area when you visit the yard.

Indian Paving Stone:

Indian paving slabs are hand split from huge lumps of rock to depths of 18mm, 22mm, 25mm and 30mm. The slabs are hand cut to numerous sizes with hand fettled edges which give them a similar appearance to old Yorkstone once they are weathered, making them a perfect choice for both contemporary and period properties. Our Indian paving comes from Rajasthan in Northern Indian, where there is some of the oldest known geology on the planet . This makes it incredibly hard wearing and means it can be used on car-trafficked areas when laid on a 100mm deep concrete base that will prevent cracking.

How should I lay my exterior paving?

We recommend using brick bond with overlapping joints. If possible use 3 or more sizes of paving to add more interest and lay the slabs across the walking line rather than with it. This can be achieved by mixing different batch sizes of Indian stone. With York stone it happens anyway as there are a multitude of sizes in each pallet that will need sorting first. There will also be some cutting needed and wastage, so it is much more expensive to lay.

Patio packs provide an easy alternative for laying Indian Stone. These come with a pre -configured mix of sizes and a pattern to follow, which comes fixed to the side of each crate. They are ideal for smaller areas but can start to look fussy over very large areas.

Should I choose tumbled or untumbled Indian paving?

Tumbling is a process whereby the slabs are rubbed and vibrated together by a special machine whilst immersed in water. This replicates natural wear and tear and leaves the surface with a smooth and worn texture, thus replicating a reclaimed product. However, if your paving is to be laid in a shady or north facing area, an un- tumbled surface provides more grip.

If you have any more questions about laying paving please don’t hesitate to contact our friendly and knowledgeable team on 01327 811888 or e-mail sales@watlingreclamation.co.uk