Tales from the riverbank…

Last time, I left you with a not-quite plaster boarded stairwell.  I can now confirm that Mike has boarded up the remaining wall, so all is ready for the skim coat.

 

The right hand wall now plaster-boarded

Whilst Mike has been doing that, I have been slightly distracted by the landscaping.  We met someone a couple of weeks ago in the cafe, who commented that when they stayed here 25 years ago, they were able to see the river.  We had been planning for a while to pollard the trees obscuring the view, but now we know these trees have arrived during a period of neglect, we felt better able to take a robust approach to their height reduction.

The view of the river at the start of the week

If you keep your eyes focused on the ‘scrub’ on our side, to the right of the bridge, you will see we have removed a conifer along with some vegetation on the green area, whilst also pollarding the trees standing much closer to the river

and the view as of this evening

so that you can now see the river surface if you stand on the grass outside the cafe.  If you zoom in on the photo above, you may be able to see the water, but I recognise that you might be distracted by the vast heap of trimmings which we have left to dry out a tad on the lower path, before we heap them up to burn later this summer.  We then walked over to the road side, and noticed that the piece we had worked on (towards the middle of this picture) looked rather scrappy, so Gill (a friend of mine from my Bristol days) and I raked and primped this area which we hope will soon look rather more kempt.

 

The view from the A470, whilst we are part way through the work on the riverside

 

We have also had a visit from Dick and friend in Dick’s pride and joy

which, fortunately, arrived just before we started piling up the rubbish.

In the cafe, things are going pretty smoothly.  We continue to meet fascinating folk and enjoy chatting about many things, including the progress of our project.  We thought you might to see this poem, written by a youngster and left behind as their party quit the cafe

 

Fan mail for Jasper

And so to today.  We were delighted to welcome Bill and Carrie C. who very kindly came to help with the garden.  Between the four of us, we have made great strides towards identifying the edge  that separates the land behind the cafe from the precipitous drop to the lower level.

The grounds above the cafe continue to be ‘revealed’

This picture shows the area we continue to work on but, unfortunately, does not show the details, so

We (or in this case Carrie C.) continues to clear the nuisance rhodos

Above you can see where Carrie C has weeded and cleared the area at the base of the hill

whilst Gill and I cut down rhodos sitting to the top left hand edge of the slope., and Bill continued to operate the block and tackle to remove stumps.  We hope in the next weeks that he will be able to pull out further stumps, enabling us to safely walk further down the cliff edge to explore the paths that we believe we are slowly revealing as we remove the scrub growth.

Meanwhile, Mike spent today putting the skim coat of plaster up in the stairwell.

Here over the area that used to house the walk through reception desk

here on the walls behind what will be steps 8-15

 

and here the area behind steps 1 to 8.

So, just a few things since I last wrote on Friday then!  What will we do next?  To find out, tune in next week, same time, same channel…

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