It’s been a bit busy during March. Busy and definitely with elements of frantic desperation! We finally got everything out of the house, late one Sunday evening. There was way too much stuff despite all my clearing out for the last three years. There is no way it’s all coming back in at the end of this project. Some serious filtering is going to happen over the summer with some ‘storage unit to charity shop/bin’ transfers.
As soon as we were completely out that night, I emailed our chief builder. ‘That’s what I’ve been waiting to hear” he said and the very next morning the scaffolding went up and things inside began to be dismantled.
First the doors and woodwork were removed, then ceilings and upstairs partition walls started coming down.
The huge hot water tank was drained, our wood-fired rayburn was disconnected, the flue was taken down, the radiators removed. The stairs vanished.
Then first floor came down. And the downstairs walls came down.
It’s good to see the original stone walls emerging from behind the old plasterboard. Some of it will clean up nicely and can be left visible. There a lot more breeze block than we realised, much less of the original barn was standing at the time it was converted.
Then the floors. The builders drilled up the floor tiles and concrete, wheelbarrowing it out of the doorways. There’s another foot still to be dug out from the picture below to get a good level footing.
Today a digger arrived. It’s currently working inside the house, digging out the internal footing. And the roof tiles are slowly and carefully being taken off and stacked ready to be replaced after the oak frame has been build in next month. Lots of checking in with the builders, seeing what we can organise to help things along, and what’s happening next.
We are saving what we can to re-use. The very limited insulation from the roof (no wonder we were so cold in here!) is stored safely and will get used in the reconstruction phase. Various piles of stone and breeze blocks are stacked around the place. The old first floor joists are stored neatly on the scaffolding. However, in the face of such a huge project, we have assessed our priorities and some of the joists are an excellent size and thickness for repairing the treehouse, so we’ll get on with that when the weather is drier.