For centuries, the chimney sweep was an integral part of the lives of British people, and despite the emergence of central heating, many homeowners prefer the warmth and cosiness of a real fire, and with the freezing winters the UK has, it isn’t surprising. Over the past decade, thousands of chimneys across the country have come out of retirement, as people realise the benefits of having an open fire in the living room, and fortunately, the traditional art of chimney sweeping is still alive.
The Traditional Chimney Sweeping Process
If you were to have your chimney swept a hundred years ago, you could expect some major disruption, plus a few hours of cleaning after the event. Chimneys can be very narrow in places, and the traditional sweep used young boys to handle the tight areas. At the ripe old age of 7, a boy might be accepted into apprenticeship by a chimney sweep, and in his employ, he would gradually learn the art of sweeping, all the while living under his master’s roof. It was regarded as a dangerous job, yet there was a level of pride to being a sweep boy, and ultimately a chimney sweep himself.
The Modern Day Sweep
He doesn’t dress as he used to, and is likely to be kitted out with overalls that have many pockets, and he also makes good use of technology with state of the art vacuum tools, and as far as dust goes, there is a minimal amount, if at all. His van would be a mobile workshop, full to the brim with brushes, poles, and all sorts of strange implements that are used only by chimney sweeps, and with a polite “can do” attitude, he will survey the chimney first to ascertain its condition. All the homeowner is asked to do is remove ornaments from the fireplace area and to provide a pathway from the living room to the front door, which old newspaper does effectively. If you are looking for chimney sweeps in Hampshire, and you search online, you will be able to find the website of a family run business, and an online booking is all it takes.
It might surprise you to learn that you can hire a real chimney sweep to appear at your wedding, in fact, many chimney sweeps offer such a service, which seems to be very popular. There is a long history with chimney sweeps in the UK, and it is said that a chimney sweep once saved the life of a king, by grabbing the reins of his horse, which was about to dismount his majesty, who was so grateful, he ordained that the chimney sweep is a royal profession, allowing the sweeps to wear their hats. It is believed by many to be a very good omen if you were to see a chimney sweep on your wedding day, and some couples see this is the ideal start to married life, besides, their house will likely have a chimney, so they might as well have it cleaned as well.
If you require a chimney sweep’s service – for cleaning or repairs – an online search will bring some results, although there are not that many companies that offer this ancient and charming profession.