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  • Suresh Kumar

Ripon Building: Centenary Architectural Landmark of the Ancient Building made by Lime Mortar

Innovation and development of architecture are inevitable, but conserving and restoring the ancient buildings is also inevitable because such antique monuments are the manifestation of our esteemed culture and history. This monument aids us to interpret the heritage and honoring our people who lived in diverse eras with diverse habits and traditions. Heritage is our culture of the past, what we live with today, and what we leave to upcoming generations. Our cultural and natural heritages are both indispensable sources of human life and stimulation.












The Ripon building in Chennai, Tamil Nadu is one of the milestones of Architecture. It is a copy of the neoclassical method of architecture, a combination of, Ionic and Corinthian.

The Ripon building construction started in 1909 (111 years ago) and was dedicated to the public in 1913 (107 years ago). It was engineering designed by G.S.T. Harris. The structure was built by Loganatha Mudaliar and took four years to build at a cost of Rs. 750,000, including a sum of Rs. 1550,000 paid to Mudaliar.


The structural walls were installed with superior stock bricks. The complete structure is set and plastered with ancient lime mortar and the roof is sustained with teak wood joists. The actual flooring of the ground floor was fabricated by Cuddapah Slate, which was replaced by marble. To adorn the building, a solid clock of 8 feet diameter has been set along with the 132-foot tower. The clock is set with a mechanical key program that needs to be set daily basis. This is really an incredible mechanism that is worth watching.


The elegant Ripon building is designed to confront any natural calamities. The structure has been met with many earthquakes, floods, cyclones, lightning, claps of thunder, heavy rainfall, and heavy heat in summer, remain strong since it was built with lime mortar.


The reason for the building's strength is the perfect design, devise, quality of raw materials used, and ancient lime mortar to use for binder, plaster, pointing, masonry joints, and mortar slurry across the building. The Ripon building got major restoration work after observing minor cracks and witnessing a few ornamental pieces fall off in 2012. Ripon building is a fine collection of heritage architecture, so it should be preserved as it was before. That is what restoration intentions are to do. Preserving heritage buildings is not easy. While renovating such heritage buildings, they encounter inordinate delays and challenges.


Even the 111 years old building did not renovate periodically but remains kept its strength and elegance as it was before because of ancient lime mortars.


Charis constructions PVT LTD is a pioneer of heritage building restoration, particularly proficient in ancient buildings renovation made with lime mortar. There are many testimonies on ancient building renovations; a great example is the world-famous Wesley Church from Chennai, Tamil Nadu. Wesley Church is one of the oldest and legendary churches constructed by ancient lime mortars, it is located in Egmore area of Chennai, the capital of the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu, India. The original structure was constructed in Gothic architecture in 1905 by Wesleyan Mission. The church is unique, with its own identity and its distinctive character. The character refers to all those visual aspects and physical features that comprise the appearance of every historic building. Now that the church has become older, the walls and pillars have eroded. Moisture content naturally enters the bricks and mortar and evaporates. This process causes the building walls to expand and contract. Over time, this perpetual process causes erosion where bits of the mortar erode or crumble away. We (Charis constructions) asked to renovate the church to preserve and retain its historical and/or architectural and/or aesthetic and/or cultural significance. We have renovated the church without ruining its historical and/or architectural and/or aesthetic and/or cultural significance. This is one of the biggest achievements of the company.


Kindly contact us for your enquiry at https://www.charisconstructions.com/


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