Carrie’s first plastering…

As mentioned in the last post, we had worked out how to solve our plumbing problem. Mike dug out the floor and we then cut the down pipe and inserted the grey double junction (with the arms sticking out), and the flexible pipe just below that.

The shot below gives a better perspective on how little space we had to play with when we added the junction that will take away the waste from the accessible toilet and one of the ladies loos.

We then backfilled the hole and concreted over the top.

Once that was finished, we were able to finish the stud wall separating the ladies and accessible toilets.

Finally, it was time for me to try my hand at plastering. I have been wanting to try this for a long time, but I didn’t want my first attempt to be anywhere too visible, in case it was a dog’s breakfast. The ideal opportunity arose as we blocked in the door at the top of the old stairs which had previously been the access into the rooms over the cafe.

Here we go then! A bit of a bish and a bosh and the next thing you know, there’s a mess of rather runny slop on the wall and you are chasing it around and pushing it onto the wall and hoping against hope that it will stop messing you about and lay smooth any minute. And once you have got it smooth, and are lightly polishing it with the float, one false move and you’ve dug a wedge into it and have to start all over again….

…but I think I got the hang of it eventually. It was rather a case of beginners luck on the back wall: the side wall took me a lot longer, but since it will all be oscured by shelves soon, I resisted the urge to get too precious about it.

Back to the real work: Mike and I had to cut another foul waste pipe…

… to fit a junction so the waste from the other ladies’ loo can be taken away. In the original plans, the waste pipe passed just in front of the plastered section (see below) but we have unearthed a beautiful slate threshold just below it, which we want to feature in these toilets. We have also found an additional down pipe, so we are varying the route slightly – just because we can!

We then finished digging out the floor (which used to be in the old larder and thus a different height to the floor in the toilets) and lined the pit with plastic to form a damp proof membrane…

…and then I spent all morning today shovelling ballast and cement into the cement mixer, and then barrowing it through to Mike who filled the pit.

Whilst we waited for the floor to dry, I mist-coated and then painted the accessible toilet ceiling; put one coat of colour on the walls; and then two coats of white on what will become a laundry cupboard. It only needs to dry and then I can fit the shelves… I know, how thrilling is that! We all have to take our fun wherever we can find it these days, I feel.

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