• Carefully set-out walls and any broken bonds, and dry bond whenever possible.

• Bricks must be lapped over each other in successive courses, both along the wall and across its thickness.

• Overlapping allows loads, including the wall’s own weight, to be evenly distributed throughout the thickness and height of the wall down to the foundations below.

• If the bricks are not lapped over each other ‘straight joints’ will occur, which are unsightly and considerably weaken the wall. External ‘straight joints’ must be avoided at all times.

• Internal ‘straight joints’ through the height of the wall must be eliminated or kept to a minimum. This is why one-brick walls in stretcher bond should be avoided.

• Closers should only be placed next to quoin/stopped-end headers and nothing smaller than a half-brick should be placed in the middle of a wall.

• Bats and closers must be cut accurately to maintain the bond and verticality of cross-joints.

• Cross-joints in alternate courses should be kept vertical. Cross-joints should not be allowed to ‘wander’, which comprises the overlap of the bricks – when this happens excessively it is known as ‘losing the bond’.

• All mortar joints must be full as any voids will weaken the wall.