More steps to success…

The restoration work this week can be divided into three tranches. The first is Shaun continuing to decorate the dining room, but his efforts were not helped by Mike and I having a great idea…

We didn’t like the panelling behind the fireplace, and wanted to see what was behind it…

…which turned out to be plasterboard from about 2000, plus some newspaper from 1964, some old electical junctions (age unknown) and what we think were ‘pulls’ to call the servants.

We chose to remove all the panelling, plasterboard it again (to bring this section of wall level with that on either side)…

…and then Mike skimmed it, ready for Shaun’s ministrations later.

We also, at Shaun’s insistence, added a piece of 3″ x 2″ (aka threebetwo) to the mantel shelf to make it a more appropriate width. For this, we are happy to trust Shaun’s judgement, especially as the flowers very kindly given to us by grateful guests do need that extra width…

…but I am a little less happy with his insistence that we photographed this cobweb which he found when he removed the secondary double glazing behind one of the coloured windows!

Shaun is working like a Trojan and has started painting the coving…

…so you can see here how things are coming on.

After a day off on Wednesday (I know -what were we thinking!?) we turned our attention to the path which Building Control want us to install behind the building. We started by considering how to moderate the deep drop as you leave this door in the long corridor…

…and we created this platform, which makes exiting via this door much more comfortable. This was the simple problem: the next is more of a challenge…

Having exited this door, there is a pinch point next to the drying and then the boiler room, where you then exit over rock.

Here we see the end of the route which I hope you can see is quite uneven, with the rock approaching (if rock can approach anything) the boiler room quite rapidly at the back…

…and above is the entrance to the path, which is narrow and turns abruptly at the boiler room wall.

This picture gives a better sense (I hope) of the terrain to be turned into a safe exit route.

We placed weedproof fabric down first, and then created a platform, the front of which becomes the first step.

Then we built a platform over the first step…

…followed by starting a fourth step…

…after which we began to build a platform which will form the fifth rise on this side, and the third (we think) on the far side.

This platform / fifth step is proving very tricky and you can see here that the width is strongly limited by the building’s proximity to the rock.

Having finished the desking above, we both packed it in for the week and retired for a well-earned glass of orange juice or wine on the patio during the ten minutes of sunshine we had before the rain started. But fear not: we are both very keen to finish these stairs which we hope to complete over the weekend, after serving breakfasts to our very welcome guests.

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