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Tips on how to lay paving stones

July 20, 2021   |   By

Whether you’re looking to lay a patio, create a brand-new driveway or smarten up your garden path, paving stones offer almost endless options.

Take a look at our tips for choosing your type of stone, designing the perfect outdoor space, and how to lay paving stones.

Outdoor natural stone paving

Outdoor natural stone paving

Paving stones are a versatile solution for exterior landscaping and design. As well as being made from natural materials, external natural stone paving blocks are extremely durable, so you can make an investment in your home.

With so many colours, styles and types of stone to choose from, you can create almost any outdoor space that comes to mind. Cobblestones offer a traditional feel, while large, rectangular pieces are sleek and simple to lay.

It’s also easy to clean paving stones. Use a hard-bristled brush and a bucket of warm soapy water, then simply rinse them down after scrubbing.

Making the perfect outdoor space with natural stone

outdoor space with natural stone

When planning your outdoor space, its intended use should be the starting point for your design.

For a sleek, modern patio, opt for large, square paving stones, while a Mediterranean-inspired terrace calls for light brown and buff shades.

Our stone can even be cut to request, giving you the ability to opt for more unusual shapes or make space to accommodate trees, walls and steps in your design.

How to lay paving stones

How to lay paving stones

Whether you choose large paver stones or smaller bricks, the overall process is pretty much the same, which is great if you’re planning to mix and match styles to create a unique design. Download our brochures and stone care guides to help with your decision making!


Remove any existing pavers and dig 150mm into the soil across the whole area, making sure the soil is evenly compacted.

Next, add a sub-base of 100mm of hardcore or aggregate for the foundation, ensuring that it is level and firmly packed.

You may also want to lay down pegs and string as guidelines to keep everything straight.

Prepare a concrete mix of three parts sand and one part cement, and pour an even 40mm layer on top of the sub-base.

Laying the stones

Cut the paving stones to size as required before laying them, and dampen them to prevent the concrete from drying too quickly. Position the first piece and carefully tap it into place with a rubber mallet.

It should sit 15mm into the concrete, and you should leave a gap of 10–15mm between each paving stone to keep them secure. Use spacers to ensure that the gaps are even, and check that everything is sitting correctly with a spirit level.

Leave the paving to set for 24–48 hours. If wet weather is predicted, cover it with a tarpaulin.

Jointing your patio

Finally, you need to fill the gaps between each paving stone to create a flat, even surface.

Brush a mixture of sand and cement into the joints and use a jointing tool to compact the mixture, repeating until each gap is full.

For larger gaps, use a trowel to work a wet mortar mixture into the joints and compact it with a jointing tool. Be careful to wipe away any excess mortar from your stone as you go to prevent staining.

Natural stone paving

natural stone paving

Now you know how to lay paving stones, it’s time to choose the perfect pieces for your project.

Stamford Stone at Home’s selection of sustainably sourced limestone, granite and sandstone guarantees high quality, with something to suit all tastes. Browse our range online or visit our showroom and see how you can transform your outdoor space.