Traditionally the only colours readily achievable from standard bitumen have been black, red and green.
Now, however, mastic asphalt can be made available in a far wider range of colours. Ted Holder, managing director of Pure Asphalt, says: 'We can now manufacture, supply and lay almost any colour of mastic asphalt, the only constraint being the availability of a suitable colour-stable pigment at an affordable cost.'
The only other consideration for bespoke colours, he says, is the need to manufacture a minimum batch size of about 8 tonnes - enough for 110m2 laid to a thickness of 30mm.
In these quantities the material 'can be laid as a single colour in a designated area or as inset designs in black and other coloured asphalts', says Holder. 'The only restrictions are the designer's imagination and the skill of the carpenter in making up the formwork.'
These modern coloured asphalts are made using a synthetic, clear binder, which is easily pigmented.The laid cost is normally between £35-£50/m 2, depending on the thickness, contract size and complexity of design.