Thatched house in Cuxland, © Cuxland-Tourismus / Bernd Schlüsselburg
© Cuxland-Tourismus / Bernd Schlüsselburg

The thatch­er’s craft

Roofing houses with reeds is one of the oldest building techniques. In fact, the first thatched roofs can be traced back as far as 4000 BC. UNESCO recognised “The Thatcher’s Craft” as intangible cultural heritage in 2014.

Reed has been used for centuries in Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony) as well, particularly in the North, where it’s difficult to imagine the rural landscape without these houses and their impressive roofs. Thatched roofs are mainly found in coastal areas and moor regions, as this is where the reeds grow in large volumes and can be cut and dried for use in construction.

Particularly impressive thatched houses can be found in settlements such as Dornumersiel and Worpswede as well as at Hösseringen Museum Village in Lüneburger Heide and the Kiekeberg Open-Air Museum in Rosengarten.