The joys of renovating a nineteenth century listed building...
The last few months have been pretty challenging in regards to the renovations and have experienced prolonged delays with sourcing materials. This was partly due to Covid19 but also the fact that a lot of materials required for this project have had to be custom made. Our builder, Chris, had to travel across the length and breadth of the country just to get his hands on specific timber for the roof!
In a previous blog I mentioned that we had decided to create a feature wall out of one of the chimney breasts by exposing the original brickwork. After committing to remove the plaster we instantly regretted it; some of the original brick above the fireplace had been replaced with engineering brick, and other parts were badly spalled. The brickwork needed replacing and repointing. This required special equipment to support the chimney breast which was a risky job for the bricklayer, but worth it in the end - phew!
Coming in to the winter months we noticed a lot of damp forming on the walls and around the chimney breasts which was worrying. Upon investigation by the chimney sweep, we uncovered huge birds nests inside both chimneys which resulted in 8 bin bags full of twigs!
Whilst that solved part of the problem, we still had the concern of the damp walls in one of the rooms upstairs. Alarmingly, our builders discovered that the flat roof had been leaking (probably for a number of years) and all of the joists were rotten and needed to be replaced urgently.
On a brighter note, things are moving forward and we're feeling really positive. Our builders should be finished on site in the coming weeks, we have a roof on the extension, new sash windows fitted, and the first fix of the plumbing complete.
In recent weeks, Sue and I have spent varnishing the floors and painting the new wooden sash windows and door frames which have taken longer than expected.
This week, the coping stones have arrived to finish off the external walls - FINALLY! We have been waiting on the stones for months, as again, they have had to be custom made. These will be fitted next week followed by the sandstone paving in the courtyard, which will make a huge difference. We are also hoping to have the frames and doors fitted shortly after which means we will be completely watertight at long last! We are really excited to be able to start painting and decorating inside and have some really great ideas moving forward.
Keep an eye out for some pictures in the coming weeks of the completed build!