The UK’s market leader for Oast cowl repair, construction
and restoration

Dude and Arnette are a fourth generation family business. Our team specialises in oast cowl repair, construction and maintenance. Wherever you live in the UK, if you have a building with an oast cowl (the distinctive chimneys on the top of oast houses) then it’s almost certain it will have been serviced by one of our family at some point in its life. From royalty to business and regular homeowners, we have been the go-to oast house repair company for over seven decades.

Get in touch to find out how we can help you.

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Just a few of our top services

Traditionally built wooden oast cowls

As a family business, we place great stock in values such as trust and integrity. Constructing oast cowls takes great skill and precision, and our team are all highly trained craftsmen. We’re proud that we don’t use subcontractors – we would never risk compromising the quality of our work or our reputation.

Dude & Arnette Darren fixing the cowl
Oast cowl repair and maintenance

The longevity of your oast cowl is a passion of ours, we will help maintain and repair any damage to extend its life and avoid more expensive work in the future. Despite our keen sense of tradition(yes we have a thing or two to say about fibreglass Oast cowls), but we’re a very modern business and are committed to delivering quality work while minimising cost for our clients.

Roofing example by Dude & Arnette
Kiln roof & roof repairs

Need some roof work? Apart from being the UK’s leading restorer and repairer of traditional Kent hop kilns, we also build all kinds of pitched roofing, from flat fibreglass roofs to oak and timber frame builds. We use traditional methods including Kent peg tiles which have been used since the 13th century. Get in touch to find out how we can help you.

Some of our latest work

Our Happy Customers

Richard H | April 2021

Would not hesitate to recommend to others

I would have to say this ‘traditional art’ remains alive and kicking with Dude and Arnette! Darren and his team are highly knowledgeable and extremely professional in their field.
Our refurbishment of three individual cowls has been undertaken to a very high standard, with the future-proofing in mind to prevent further leakage’s for the initial poor design.
Measurements were taken and a ‘bespoke’ surface created back in the workshop, prior to one site installation.

Rosemary | March 2021

We know we can rely on D&A to do what’s needed in a professional and efficient way

We love living in our oast house, but it demands expert, tender loving care from time to time. Darren and his team have previously refurbished our cowls and the rendered coating on our cones. Now our appearance has been further improved by works to the black weatherboarding on the barn section of our home. We’ll be in touch again when the next facelift is required as we know we can rely on D&A to do what’s needed in a professional and efficient way — Rosemary

Paul | November 2020

Your pride in and enthusiasm for what you do shines through

We are delighted with the new cowl for our oast. From your first contact with us to the moment it was up, we have appreciated your sensible advice and efficient service. For us, it has been a real pleasure to employ a local family firm that is keeping traditional skills alive, building each new cowl in the way it has always been done. On top of that, we got the thrill of watching you work as the old cowl was lifted off, and then again as the new one was lifted up – even the neighbours stopped to watch that! Unlike the creaky old cowl, it replaced, our new cowl turns in the slightest breeze, and we look at it knowing that we have a piece of genuine craftsmanship that will last. Your pride in and enthusiasm for what you do shines through” — Paul
Barry | September 2020

Appreciation for Cowl Work

The cowl of our oast house has, over past two winter storms, developed a horrid noise. Just prior to Covid-19 lockdown, we sought quotes for investigation and repairs. Dude & Arnette (D&A) were not the cheapest, but we were impressed by the attitude of Darren Hole (MD).

Lockdown destroyed our planned schedule as D&A took a responsible approach towards their staff and clients. Our confidence was fully justified as almost like clockwork, work has this month proceeded speedily. Scaffolding by High Score was efficiently and pleasantly carried out, D&A team worked together so well with Darren Hole keeping a close eye. Work required was not so much cowl but support of centre post which rectified. Now with recent high winds no noise or leaks and cowl looking smart. Thank you Darren & Team.

Sofia | August 2020

I recommend Darren and the team very highly

I suffered significant storm damage to my Oast cowl, the result of which was the cowl leaning horribly and flapping around dangerously, causing damage to the roof and looking like it could topple off with the slightest gust of wind. Darren popped round within hours of speaking to him, agreed that fast action was needed and had the cowl off and the roof weatherproofed within a couple of days. There was then a massive delay (due entirely to errors made by my home insurers) which must have caused issues for Darren, but he was patient and understanding throughout. Once the insurers sorted out their issues, Darren was back in a flash to repair the roof and replace the beautifully restored cowl to a very high standard. He even threw in one of their awesome t-shirts! I recommend Darren and the team very highly.

Rob Bird | April 2019

We would have no hesitation in recommending Dude and Arnette

Dude and Arnette did a great job re-roofing a significant portion of our house. Although we have no oast, we have an old peg tile roof with a complex structure and the elderly timbers were in very poor condition. We would have no hesitation in recommending Dude and Arnette.

Mike Alder | August 2019

Efficient and friendly service

I thoroughly recommend DUDE & ARNETTE for the recent refurbishment and painting works on my cowls, together with associated roofing repairs and lead work. This follows many years of excellent workmanship with an efficient and friendly service.

Martin Lovegrove | March 2019

Henden Farm fresh Oast Cowls

Dude and Arnette built and replaced two existing fibreglass cowls on the oast house on our farm at Henden. Darren Hole carried out some detailed research to ensure that cowls of original design were installed. This was lovely work. The construction and installation went well and today they are in pride of place, enhancing the house itself. Thank you, Darren and your family and team. Much appreciated.

Nicola Day | Feb 2019

Out with the Old in with the New!

After capping off our kiln and taking off the old cowl, we could see there was no saving it! Darren and his team did a fantastic job, capping off and then totally rebuilding our cowl, using wood and paint, which looks so much more alive than the old fibreglassed version. It is so nice to see a family business protecting a huge part of Kents heritage. Professional, quick and such a fantastically priced job. I would recommend Darren and his team to anyone.

Alistair Taylor | Jan 2019

Replacing oast cowls on a shared property

I am very happy to recommend Dude and Arnette. They dealt with the replacement of our oast cowls with great efficiency and expertise. The end result is magnificent. Our tenants were barely disturbed, and the price seemed very fair. Throughout they were a pleasure to deal with, and always prompt to answer queries.

Martin Nicholson | Aug 2018

Repairing storm damaged Oast Cowls

Having had storm damage to one of our two cowls I called Darren to ask his help and he came the next day and offered a verbal quote to remove the cowl, make safe and watertight. Two days later he arrived with his team and a crane and removed the cowls and took them away. I was impressed with their professionalism and quality of workmanship and would highly recommend Dude and Arnette.

Beccy Smart | Aug 2018

Refurbishing a well worn cowl

The team were excellent to work with from start to finish, they were very competent and easy going. The end result was a beautiful gleaming white, smoothly rotating cowl. Our neighbours cowls now look even more derelict!

We have them lined up for maintenance work for the next time the cowl needs a service in 5 or so years!

Sue & Les Hart | Mar 2018

Refurbishing a well worn cowl

From agreement of work to be done to completion of works, everything went to plan including price, timing, quality of workmanship and was carried out by a cheerful, competent and professional team. We have no hesitation in recommend D & A. LH, Hever

Malcolm Catmur-Neame | Faversham Mar 2018

Refurbishing a well worn cowl

We had been having problems with our Oast Cowl for some time and decided we needed a professional and experienced team to find the solution. Darren and team inspected our cowl and decided the only option was to remove it for repair at their workshops. We highly recommend Dude & Arnette, Darren and his team were professional and easy-going throughout the whole operation.

Julian Ryder Richardson | Wadhurst, East Sussex Mar 2018

Refurbishing a well worn cowl

Dude and Arnette are efficient, workmanlike, knowledgeable and courteous. They are an essential resource for all owners of Oast Houses with cowls.

Rosanne Sternberg | Bodiam Nov 2017

Refurbishing a well worn cowl

We have owned a triple oast since 1979 and had maintenance on the white Cowls worked on by several different companies.
After having Dude and Arnette renovate the cowls during a complete renovation of the roundels and make new fingers for them from polycarbonate, they have looked good for several years. Their service, fees, quality of paintwork and timeframe was top class and we are very happy. I highly recommend Darren Hole and Dude and Arnette for any Oast maintenance, repair and painting.

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