A NORTH Yorkshire brick company has completed a 60,000 (POUND)contract to supply 30,000 bricks for St Albans Cathedral.

David Armitage, chairman of independent York Handmade, said: "I think I am right in saying that St Albans is the home of some of the earliest examples of brick use in Roman Britain, so as a brick-maker, we are very proud to supply one of the birth places of brick in the UK."

St Alban was the first Christian British martyr. The cathedral is the oldest place of continuous Christian worship in the country and is a blend of architectural styles spanning over a thousand years, containing some priceless original Roman bricks.

Mr Armitage said: "This order is one of the most important recently for us. It includes 4,000 differently-shaped special bricks. The order was originally for a competitor’s handmade brick. Sadly, they ceased production so they could no longer supply the cathedral. Fortunately, we are able to move swiftly and match the specific handmade bricks for this project."

Bashkar Rughani, managing surveyor with main construction contractors Thomas Sinden, said: "York Handmade have done a magnificent job at the cathedral. Providing bricks for both the Welcome Centre and the adjacent Chapter House, they have achieved a seamless look with a great finish, which has been extremely well-received. The colour is perfect, effortlessly blending in with the rest of the historic cathedral. They should be very proud."