From serial killers to celebrity bricklayers, 16 of the most bizarre and surprising best brick facts for you to impress on site.


I can’t emphasise this enough: bricks are awesome. They’re the building blocks of…well, buildings. If you’re a builder or building contractor, you know that better than most. Bricks are good for the soul.

But there’s a catch. To the untrained eye, they can seem a little boring. If you’re on site and you’re running low on conversation, a brick might not seem like the best source of builder banter. But that’s where you’re wrong. Bricks are crazy interesting, and we’ve got the proof.

We’ve put together a list of top brick facts, from the informative to the downright ridiculous. Fire off a few of these on site and you’ll be hailed as a construction guru in no time! Or you can just mention them when you’re down the pub – your choice.

So let’s get to the brick facts!


Winston Churchill statue - brick facts

Winston Churchill…and some bricks

1. Winston Churchill found so much enjoyment and relaxation in laying bricks he even joined and paid dues in the Bricklayer’s Union. He even inquired in a letter “is there is a rule regulating the number of bricks which a man may lay a day?…and what are the restrictions on overtime?”


2. There are robots that exist today that can lay 1,000 bricks an hour


3. When demolishing the house of serial killers Fred and Rosemary west, they made sure to crush every single brick in order to discourage people from taking them as souvenirs.


Heineken bottles double as brick wall - brick facts

The Heineken bottle wall in all its green glory

4. In 1963, Alfred Heineken created a beer bottle that could also function as a brick to build houses.


5. In 1916, a man sent a building to Utah through the mail! He needed to build a bank, but his construction materials were 126 miles away. He packaged 80,000 bricks into boxes and mailed them. As you can imagine, the US postal service was a little miffed.


6. Fort Jefferson, a massive but unfinished coastal fortress in the Florida Keys, is composed of over 16 million bricks and is the largest masonry structure in the Americas.


Stockport Viaduct - brick facts

Stockport Viaduct and its 11,000,000 bricks

7. Stockport Viaduct is the largest brick structure in the United Kingdom. 11,000,000 bricks were used in its construction! The 27 arch viaduct took 21 months to build and cost £70,000.


8. Lego used to give long serving employees a solid gold brick for 25 years of service


9. WW1 aerial dogfights used to be pilots shooting at each other with pistols and throwing bricks…and the occasional grenade


10. Cement mortar is intended to be weaker than bricks, because mortar is easier and cheaper to repair than bricks


11. Before Arnold Schwarzenegger got into acting, he had already made millions through his brick laying company


12. Since 1990, Bank of England notes unfit for circulation are ‘shredded and compressed into bricks which are then used in agriculture’


Lego bricks - brick facts

Lego – delighting kids and infuriating their parents since 1958

14. Six eight-stud LEGO bricks (2×4) can be combined 915,103,765 different ways.


15. In America there’s an International Brick Collectors Association that has cataloged bricks from every state in the US and distributes a yearly journal on the subject.


16. The largest brick arch in the world, the 121-foot (37 m) tall Taq-i Kisra, is nearly 1,500 years old and the only surviving structure from the ancient city of Ctesiphon.


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