Flags and Slabs
Flat pieces of natural stone, porcelain or concrete, 300mm or larger, and in all sorts of colours and textures. Most popularly used for patios, pathways, courtyards and driveways. Enormous choice, including wet-cast and pressed concrete as well as hundreds of different types of stone. What’s available, and how should it be laid?
Pre Cast Concrete British Standard Flags
Concrete flags or slabs were the mainstay of public footpaths and many a driveway for decades before being superseded by other materials, but they still have their uses, as will be explored on this page.
Patio flags tend to be smaller and thinner than those used for commercial projects, and even though the installation techniques tend to be similar, if not identical, to those used for larger, thicker units, this page focuses on the types of decorative concrete flags used for patios and light-use driveways.
The term "crazy paving" refers to the 'crazed' appearance of the finished surface, although it could equally apply to the notion held by some folk that this is a cheap or easy form of paving. It isn't, and this page aims to explain why that is.
Laying Stone Flags
This page looks at the laying of riven stone flags, and the special problems they present, compared to concrete flags and other types of paving.
How to Lay Flags and Slabs
As with most things in life, there is a right way and a wrong way. On this page, the correct methods used to lay all types of flag paving are considered and explored, and the reasons why the wrong methods are to be avoided are, hopefully, explained so they can be completely avoided.
Laying Flags to Free Edges
Flags laid to free edges have been known to slip sideways, moving out of alignment and working themselves loose in the process. This page looks at how flags laid at free edges can be secured in position and so avoid the eventual failure of the pavement, which could entail costly reconstruction.
Rigid Laying of Granite Paving
This page examines the installation procedure used when laying granite flagstones as a rigid pavement footway within a town centre.
Paving Path Corners
Dealing with falls when a pathway rounds a corner seems to baffle many people, but it's actually quite simple, once the basic principles are understood. This page examines those basic principles by using worked examples.
Laying light-coloured flagstones
Over recent years there has been a trend towards using imported light-coloured natural stone paving for the more discerning residential and commercial projects. The pale hues and the often porous nature of this type of stone paving presents specific problems that are considered more fully on this page.
Patterns and Layouts for Flags and Slabs
There are a huge variety of patterns and layouts used when laying flags and slabs. Some are pretty basic and will be familiar to almost everyone, but others are a little more exotic and seen less often.
Calibrated paving refers to flagstones (most commonly) that have been processed to ensure they are of a reasonably consistent thickness. The calibration process is examined on this page.
Flagstones for Driveways from Pavestone
Many homeowners want to use Indian Sandstone flags to pave a residential driveway, but worry that the flags may not be strong enough to cope with vehicular traffic. The good news is that it is possible to use certain flagstones to build a driveway, but that doesn't apply to ALL imported sandstone flags. This guide produced in association with Pavestone helps identify the right type!
Project packs are bundles of flag paving, comprising a fixed number of certain sizes packaged together, usually on a single pallet. The premise is that it is a convenient way to buy a reasonable assortment of the available sizes in a particular range, but there’s more to it than that, as is explained more fully on this page.
Flared-edge flagstones and jointing
Some manufactured flags have a base that is larger than the face, so the sides are flared, drawn or 'slope outwards'. These flags can present installation problems that are considered on this page
Flags and slabs - definitions and terminology
As with most industries, there’s a particular range of terminology and specific definitions used for paving in general and flag paving in particular. This page aims to provide clear, unambiguous definitions for the more commonly encountered terms.