Past blog posts have looked at fairly run of the mill, yet important aspects of what our scaffolders do – specifically common projects aided by a scaffold, and how to be safe while on them. So in this third blog post, we’ve come at it from the leftfield with an interesting topic: the history of the scaffolder! We hope clients in Winchester, one of our principal service areas, will find it revealing and educational on the origins of this essential industry.
But it may be that you’ve stumbled across this article simply searching for scaffolders covering the Winchester area… if so, it’s unlikely you want a history lesson! So don’t hesitate in calling our friendly team on 01489 572 150. We’ll talk through your project and provide an exceptionally competitive price.
The History of Scaffolders
The Originators – History’s first scaffolders – as far as know – were the ancient Greeks and Egyptians. The latter used scaffolding to erect their pyramids, while the former used scaffolding to build their elaborate and architecturally rich cities. Part of the reason we know this is the Berlin Foundry Cup, created in the early 5th century BC, which is painted to show scaffolding being used by various figures pictured. Obviously, the materials and techniques were very, very different from what our team use when assisting Winchester clients.
The Middle Era – Bridging the gap between the more modern structures built in recent time, and these very early versions, we saw medieval craftsmen rely on scaffolding. Specifically, by monks! It’s likely scaffolding was used in cities like Winchester to build, maintain and repair their monasteries and various places of worship.
Industrialisation – Wooden scaffolds were of major use during the Victorian period, bound together by hemp rope, wire and sheer/square lashing. You’ll be unsurprised to hear that safety equipment was usually eschewed. If you were to look back into the past, you’d see Winchester scaffolders in everyday suits going about their work confidentally; correspondingly, the risk of death and injury was FAR higher, and the profession was known for its danger. Once the 1900s came and industrialisation swept the UK, metal scaffolding tubes began to be used, and nothing was the same again! No more wood and bamboo.