What Are Ridge Tiles?

Ridge tiles are designed to keep out the rain and were traditionally made from either clay or slate.

Ridge tiles are extremely important structures that have been protecting us from the elements almost from the moment humankind first left their caves. More modern materials such as concrete and even plastic have since been incorporated into roof designs, as ridge tiles have evolved.

Table of Contents

A Brief History of Ridge Tiles

Clay tiles have been a fixture of the English landscape for many hundreds of years, these overlapping, distinctive tile designs are quintessentially British and are a staple of the small English town. It is believed that the Romans first introduced clay ridge tiles to the English. They also established the distinctive ‘over and under’ clay tile structure that is so recognisable. The curved side of the tiles are laid down to the roof while a cylindrical tile was overlaid to cover the joints and create a waterproof roof.

Ridge Tiles on the Roof of a Building

But the clay roof tile did not actually stick after the Romans departed. Aside from a few monasteries, the rest of England switched to thatched roofing, which was much cheaper, and this technique became the roofing standard among English homes for the best part of 400 years. Clay tiling did not become prominent in England again until the 13th century, and these versions were of simple design.

Following the Great Fire of Southwark in 1212, King John decreed that buildings adopt clay tiles as they presented less fire risk than thatched roofs in built-up areas. Clay tile sizes were eventually standardised into law by Edward IV in 1477, and this is still considered the standard today, all these centuries later.

Whilst clay remains a key material in ridge tiles, other materials are often utilised for roofing, such as slate and concrete; clay and slate in particular remain staples in the UK roofing industry. Whilst roofing techniques and design have improved immensely over the years, the appeal of materials like clay and slate still very much lies in their rustic charm.

Back to Top

Our Range of Ridge Tiles

At UK Slate, we supply an extensive range of ridge tiles to finish the roof line. Our ridges are produced from slate, clay and concrete in various styles to suit different types of buildings. Here are just a few examples of our fantastic range of ridge tiles:

Back to Top

Clay Clapped Angle Ridge Tile

Clay Clapped Angle Ridge Smooth Red

This tile is the classic traditional finish to a ridge line. These ridges are UK produced to ensure dimensional consistency and reliability. The colour of this tile is classically traditional, matching those colours produced for centuries. Perfect for any building trying to retain that rustic charm.

Back to Top


Graphite Capped Slate Ridge Tile

Graphite Capped Slate Ridge

This tile provides a high-quality compliment finish to any natural slate roof. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how cost-effective they are, given their high-quality construction. They are produced from pure slate deposits and the ridges are manufactured by hand in Brazil, to our specifications.

Back to Top

Conservation Concrete Ridge Tile



Conservation Concrete Ridge Red Sandstone

This tile is designed to replicate traditional hand carved sandstone ridges of the past. With its smooth cast surface, this tile is available in a range of profiles and colours and we can even offer special finishes to order.

Back to Top



Contact UK Slate for More Information

For more information on ridge tiles, get in touch with us by phoning 01539 559 289 or by sending an email with your enquiry to [email protected]. Alternatively, you can fill out and submit your question to us using our online contact form and a member of our team will be happy to assist you.

Back to Top