Monday, 30 September 2013
We discover after all Dave's floor cleaning that the black and white tiles are actually black and red! We can't wait to remove the awful 1950's fireplace and it seems strange to think that it must have once been someone's pride and joy. It suddenly starts to feel as if the farm is ours.
Sunday, 29 September 2013
Friday, 27 September 2013
Thursday, 26 September 2013
We light our first bonfire and get rid of a lot of the weeds that we have dug up over the last couple of months. The wind was supposed to blow from the east but keeps changing direction covering us in smoke. Dave is in charge of the burning and there is still heat in the embers two days later. We should have brought some potatoes.
Wednesday, 25 September 2013
Tuesday, 24 September 2013
Sunday, 22 September 2013
After much weed clearing (by me) we manage to unearth our septic tanks. It would appear these are in good condition having been put in fairly recently and just need new drains to run into them. There is a main tank and an overflow and an inspection chamber. Now we have cleared the land of nettles, brambles and thistles (disturbing some wild bees in the process) we can get it emptied.
Friday, 20 September 2013
We clear the second fireplace - this time in what will be 'our' living room and John was able to put down the flue liner. This one went in smoothly - unlike the one in the guest living room. We weren't there to see the problems but apparently it came lose at the top and had to be pulled down the chimney clearing all the remaining soot with it.
Tuesday, 17 September 2013
Wednesday, 11 September 2013
We had expected to uncover several of layers of wallpaper but downstairs there is only one. In most places the colour has completely faded away but here it must have been covered by a picture or mirror. Paint beneath this and elsewhere is green then blue - very strong hues applied straight to the lime plaster. Where the plaster falls away you can see the horsehair in it.
When we bought the farm we acquired much more in terms of barns and sheds than we'll ever need. Fortunately our neighbour would like to have this biggest shed and is happy to relocate it. Currently it dwarfs the house - and amazingly there is planning permission granted to put up an additional one - somehow I don't think we'll be doing that!
Monday, 9 September 2013
Because there were young children living at the farm recently the walls have been covered in nailed on plywood and this has then had vinyl paper applied. The result is that as we start to strip the ply and paper off we find that the lime plaster behind is soaking wet and much of it falls off the wall. This is a very dusty but satisfying job. The architects who designed the refurbishment visit us and I think they are rather surprised by what has been done by the previous owners - which is somewhat different from the plans.
Saturday, 7 September 2013
With guidance and a massive power tool from the builder we start work removing the 1950's fireplaces. Before long though we are back to using the hammer and chisel. It's hard to imagine the original form of the fireplace as it seems to have been very altered over the years. There are two sections with bull nosed bricks and then we find a pair of brick (black painted) corbels.
Wednesday, 4 September 2013
Work is now under way repairing the roof. Apparently there are cracks to the purlins where they meet the A frame and these are being braced. Hopefully the roof will look much the same as before but without the sagging and the missing roof tiles. One day as we watched we saw a pigeon fly out of the roof! Dave and I were despatched to the reclamation yards to find some valley tiles. We must have looked through hundreds of almost right ones. The right colour, size and angle proved impossible to find so we returned with what seemed the best match.
Monday, 2 September 2013
Sunday, 1 September 2013
Whilst Dave gets on with cleaning and lifting the quarry tiles I have the horrid job of tackling the parquet. This is stuck to the floor with weird stretchy yellow adhesive that is still very elastic. I am trying to be careful but it is easy to split the 5-finger construction and it takes a lot of effort to separate each tile from the floor.