The Strake House
Repaired and renovated with grant aid from Forest Heath District Council and Suffolk County Council in 2011.
The small structure known locally as the Strake House is thought to date from the 19th Century and is all that remains of a wheelwright's that was situated in the area.
The Strake is constructed with clunch walls which is a local soft limestone, built off a brick base, with a red pantiled roof and gault brick chimney.
The building was used as a small forge to heat short strips of iron, approximately 2' x 2" (600mm x 50mm) called strakes, to put on wooden cartwheels to act as a tyre. The strakes had regular square holes punched along their centre to allow them to be nailed into place.
The wheel was normally set up over a pit of water and the red hot strip of iron laid on top of the wheel and nailed with big rose-head nails across the joints of the felloes, the sections of timber that made up the rim of the wheel.
The wheel was turned so the hot strake was quenched in the pit of water and the same operation repeated on the opposite side of the wheel until approximately six strakes fomed a complete tyre. These wheels were known as 'being shod' and shoeing a wheel in this manner was practised from the dark ages to the late 19th Century.