All quiet on the Welsh front…

…when it comes to the rebuilding work, as we are still flat out being hoteliers – which is great news! We remain in the very lucky position that if a booking is cancelled because people’s plans change, it is generally less than an hour later that the vacancy is booked up again. We continue to make plans for the rebuilding work – Mike is booking hire equipment ready for early next month but for now we are too busy ironing sheets and cooking breakfasts to be making massive progress ourselves.

On the other hand Niall is making great progress.

Many of you will know that the ‘old’ front door currently allows access to the cafe/restaurant, and the entrance porch -if you were able to open it – leads to a rather sad 1970’s interior-grade door. Bizarrely, the entrance porch cannot be entered from the outside as there is a locked access door with no handle at the end – which we plan to change.

The first step is to commission Niall to make us a traditional-style entrance door to fit the aperture, and you can see it coming together below.

Earlier today, we solemnly agreed the size of the glass panes we need to order, so my hope is that we will soon be able to fit this door, and once that makes the house secure we will be able to amend and improve the entrance porch.

Looking at our booking system, it may be another two weeks before I can update you again, but here’s hoping we have some interesting news for you then…

Little to see here: version 2?

Last time I wrote, the wood shed was finished and the approach had been partly dug – and it still remains to be dug because we are, thankfully, extremely busy with the accommodation. On the plus side, daughter Pip has returned from her training activities earlier this week and…

…decided to get stuck in and help. She started stacking the firewood we created whilst dismantling wooden furniture, structural timbers, decking, balcony railings and so forth, filling the store about a quarter full, but there is plenty still to be shifting…

…from the old bin store, which we must empty and then demolish before we start working on the next set of accommodation suites. I have a certain amount of anxiety now that we may have built our new woodshed slightly under capacity!

The other job we have tried to progress is the removal of flakey paint from the turret. Below you see how it was a fortnight ago and below that…

…how it appears after several hours of dedicated additional work.

Yes, I know: not much to show for all our efforts. It looks like we may have to have a rethink, and perhaps stop trying to pick some of this paint off the wall, because it certainly seems reluctant to move.

In the meantime, it’s back to laundry duties for me, and hopefully I will be in a position to update you on our progress again in about a fortnight.

Wooden you like a new woodshed?

Friends Yvonne and Julie are still in residence, keeping us on task. This week saw us dismantle the cabinet you see below as we continue to empty ‘John’s bit’ where the building work will soon commence with a vengeance…

…so we had to put Julie (and Yvonne) fully in the picture for our plans! (Sorry, dreadful pun – just couldn’t resist).

Julie also managed a bonfire for us, to dispose of some wood and other garden materials. After the fire has fully cooled down, we plan to clear this site which has obviously been used for many, many bonfires in the past, and return it to proper woodland.

The big project this week was to install a woodshed which, as you can see below, now nestles several metres beyond the oil tank.

Yvonne and Julie built the woodshed, under the expert guidance of our neighbour…

…Niall, who advised throughout on the construction method.

Once the roof had been securely attached by Yvonne,…

…Julie set to, lining the floor with pavers…

…leaving significant gaps to allow rainwater to drain away.

Once that was finished, we needed to address the obstacles that prevented us barrowing the wood into the woodshed…

…so Julie volunteered to be the latest driver of our trusty mini-digger.

It may not be obvious from these photos, but there is a steep drop just off the left hand side of this snap, so Julie is trying to forge a path through as close as possible to the oil tank.

By end of play tonight, the picture below shows: a clear path (darker grey coloured on left) that is now between about 15cm – 40cm below the old ‘path’ (lighter grey on right) – so we still have some work to do to level this in due course. However, when Julie and Yvonne leave, they will know they have moved things on hugely, and will be sorely missed!

Oh, and on one of the rainy afternoons, we installed this mirror at the top of the old stairs, into an alcove created during the 1970’s alternations when a window was blocked up. We are hoping that this mirror will help bring more light into the area.

Well, thats about it for last week. Next week is likely to be far less impressive as we will be back to just 2 pairs of hands, but time will tell…