Monday, 30 March 2015

Building work

Through the winter the farmhouse roof has been replaced with new joists, slates and insulation.
This has made a surprising difference especially upstairs with much better heat retention when the stove is not lit, or not running hot enough to keep the radiators going.
By morning the weather station 'indoor' temperature has often only dropped about 0.5C but will drop another degree or so through the day if it's cold and windy(and stove not lit until evening)

The main reason for the work was increasing problems with damp and drips getting in at both gable ends and around the chimneys.
The stone capping on the gables did not have lead underneath so in prolonged wet spells the wall below got increasingly wet - and roof wood beams going into it were starting to rot.

A further tremendous improvement was installing a small roomheater wood stove in the always chilly front room. The chimney from that fire was always a bit suspect and would sometimes smoke upstairs so had not been used for years.
The stove is connected to a new liner so perfectly safe now.
It gets astonishingly hot  burning a bucketful of half a dozen small logs and the heat circulates through the hall and upstairs.
A room which previously seemed to chill half the house now gives out heat and helps the radiators out quite a bit.

Stove running while decorating after installation - a few bits on mantepiece to see how it might look!

So that all completed, something else causing concern was the woodstore stone wall,which has been leaning out at an ever more concerning angle.
I asked Chris about simply rebuilding the wall, which he could have done - but he pointed out it would make more sense really to rip the whole ugly thing out and make something more useful.

After a bit of thought I came up with more or less rebuilding how it was in the early 70s before being demolished as unsafe.
There were three little 'rooms' one had originally been a wash house, one a pig sty and one a stable.
These were all quite small and in an L shape.


Log store just before demolishing

Wall moving steadily outwards!
Shed knocked down and debris scraped up to level site - Day One.
Part of the old wall fell down when the roof was pulled away!
The other part is not as bad but still needs rebuilding.

That end will be a lockable store and to the left will be an open fronted store for logs and bins.

Friday, 20 March 2015

Spring ploughing

Mark Robson for Houlstons with the new Case Puma.
At the moment he finds some of the controls a bit unhandy!