Vertical Crack in 1st Floor Brick Party Wall.

9 Nov 2016
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United Kingdom
Hi, I have removed some bad plaster and found a vertical crack in the brickwork of the first floor party wall. It looks like there is a plank of wood resting on top of the highest cracked brick at ceiling level. Could this be the cause? Why is this here as it looks like it might go into the neighbours house? The chimney breasts / stack which ran up this wall to the left of the crack has previously been fully removed including on the roof. Could this be the cause? Can I replace cracked bricks and repoint and plaster or does the prob require a more major fix? Thanks for any advice! The house is a 2 bedroom Victorian 1900s terraced house. I think it has old stock bricks with lime mortar.


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Judging by the absence of cracking and out of level surfaces surrounding the "crack" its probably something that you could carefully clean up and then brick up.
Perhaps the making good after removing the c/breasts wasn't too clever?
Why the embedded length of wood I dont know.
There's the remains of a brick arch lower right - why there, what was it supporting over?

Is the party wall a cavity wall?
Do any of the header bricks tie-in to the neighbour's party wall skin?
Have you examined the ceiling below - does the room below have a linteled knock-through?
Have you been into the loft and examined the area above?
Has the neighbour reported any cracks or disturbance?
Is the abutting wall a partition or a masonry wall?
Thanks for your reply Vinn! Yes I was wondering whether the chimney removal and patch up could be related.

I haven't had a measured survey / drawings so not sure about the answer to some of your questions. I had a look in the loft and can see where the chimney stack was removed as there is some brickwork remaining which looks to form the outer edge of the neighbours part of the chimney. Although there is nothing left on the roof I'm assuming the neighbour didn't bother removing the breasts inside the house and this is why I can see it. Also because there seems to have been no gap between the two half's of the chimney maybe this suggests that the party wall is not a cavity wall. The rest of the party wall in the loft is boarded up so hard to see what's going on.

On the first floor, some of the broken bricks in the crack look like they may tie into the neighbours wall so I'm worried about chiseling out to replace...should I be? My two rooms on the ground floor are knocked through with a wooden arch in place (maybe a lintle above the arch)..could this be the reason for the brick arch shown in the Pic?

I'm not sure about whether the neighbours have cracks, I'll ask. The abutting wall is masonry. One further point, the two houses are separated by an arched passage on the ground-floor running from front to back gardens and the second floors of mine and the neighbours house meet above this passage.
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