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Monday 24th November 2014
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What are 10 Downing St's black bricks made of?

Question

Ten Downing Street has black bricks, but I don’t know any other buildings that have black bricks. How come? What are they made of?
Matt, Leatherhead

Answer

** Definitive **
Name: Josh, Langley
Qualification: Engineer… and my house is made from them!
Answer: They do exist. They are black Victorian Engineering Bricks, often used in black factories. They are impervious to water which is why they were often used as the first few layers of bricks for damp-proofing in Victorian housing. They’re often used with white lime mortar to get the contrasting black and white. Other houses around London also use them, so it’s not special to Downing Street.