We re-built the old coalhole that was on the end of the building. It had to be re-built as it was damp and very dark. We finished the flooring in here yesterday and once the varnish has gone off, it will be time to install the skirting boards.
It is a great space – a little quirky – but it just adds character to the room.
Adding skylights and increasing the size of the window has increased the light here as well as increasing the sense of space.
We added these skylights to the coal hole to bring in extra light. We also doubled the size of the window to the left for the same reason. This space is now much lighter – it also feels much bigger than before we rebuilt it (even though it is exactly the same size). It is amazing what difference the light makes.
This room used to be the old coal hole. The door to the left leads to the outside. The steps have been built using flagstones that we reclaimed from the kitchen. The door to the right leads into the main house and I suspect that this used to be the original door into the property. It ceased to be used as the front door when the coal hole was built – the coal hole is on the 1768 map, so this doorway pre-dates that – the steps are original (the bottom step forms part of a foundation stone) and show significant signs of wear.
The second of three external doors was fitted today. They are Suffolk oak doors from XL Joinery. They were one of the few suppliers that had these types of doors in correct height.
It takes longer to install external doors rather than internal doors. While we can probably fitted 2 internal doors in a day, we only get 1 external door fitted in a day.
The study (that used to be the old coal hole) now has a new exterior door. Zep is very proud of his work – he is the only Lurcher that has learnt to hang an external door!
We resumed plastering in the older part of the building just before Christmas and I think by the end of this week we should be ready to make a start on the extension. Fingers crossed the electricians should have finished the first fix electrics by then.
All of the walls and ceilings are (plaster) boarded and then plastered. The ceilings are a bit of a challenge since all the old roof trusses are old and bent. It makes cutting the boards difficult and then plastering around them in more difficult. Particularly when you consider this all has to be done off tower scaffold as ladders would not reach. The ceilings in the new extension are easier as the timber is a little straighter, however, the increased ceiling height will make things a little more interesting!
Ian and Mark (the plasterers) are making some great progress. However, it is difficult to do it justice in photos. And here is one photo to prove it!
This is Jo’s study with the balcony into the kitchen and the parapet wall overlooking the stairs. Most of the ceiling and half of the walls have been boarded. They will be plastered before the end of the week.
There is a small parapet wall that overlooks the staircase from Jo’s office. The studwork has been in place for a while, however, we have yet to fix the handrail. The oak timber arrived for the handrail a few weeks ago. The timber is fairly chunky at 150mm x 150mm. It has been languishing on the floor of the study since it arrived. Today, we decided that it was about time that we had a look at it in situ.
It looks great, particularly when viewed from the stairs as the handrail matches the beam below. We need to get the handrail fixed before the outside of the studwork can be plasterboarded.
These pieces of oak timber arrived a few weeks ago. They have been on the floor in my office. They look a bit big for a handrail!
From this side of the parapet, the handrail looks the right size. The panel between the oak timbers will be plastered. We can only get this plastered once the handrail has been fixed in place (using screws from underneath).