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Hello from the other side

Updated: Jan 2

Turning attention to the west side, we didn’t bother trying to strip off plastic paint coatings this time.

So one week and a couple of skips full of old render later, we are back to bare stone walls.

Not too many cracks to tie together on this side, so with the windows all safely boarded up, the walls are cleaned up and prepped, ready for the scat coat. This is very wet lime, thrown or hurled at the wall, with a tirolean machine or trowel. It’s just sort of splattered at this stage.

Once that’s dried, there’s the scratch coat, of haired lime, which is scored to allow the smoother outer layer to bond.

This is covered with rolls of hessian to keep it from drying out too quickly. Once it’s fully hardened, the smooth top coat without hair goes on.

I actually climbed that scaffolding myself to get the left hand picture. I am definitely more suited to a desk job! While the render hardens completely, there’s lots to get on with. Chimneys to repair and clear, and then flue liners to run. Chimney pots to match and put on. And while we have the scaffolding up, that little window to the top of that middle picture hides four huge redundant water tanks, that needed cutting up with a special tool called a nibbler, so as not to cause sparks. They came out of the window in bits. It looked as though they may have gone in that way, but the window and lintel must have been completely taken out to do it. I’ll write a post on the tank room another time. It has a nicely repaired window now, and as we had access, that bit of render got done at the same time.

The gutters and fascias also need repair, though they’re not in as bad a shape as the northern end. And we received our listed buildings consent to renovate the inside of the apartment, creating an ensuite bathroom, installing central heating and amending the plumbing, so we can now change and tidy up the drain and waste pipes, especially inside the courtyard.

Two months on, and painting can finally get underway.

We still had to wait a little bit longer to take down the scaffolding, until the tank room work was all done, chimney pots installed, flues run, cowls fitted and buildings control officer happy.

So it was heading towards Christmas when we could finally see the final result. You can certainly see the difference, where the join is around the tank room. So that’s about 15 windows, and one two-storey wing complete. Unfortunately all the part to the left and all the part to the right of the large photo are still to do. As are the two formal Georgian elevations. But for now, the two-storey section looks great. Outside.

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Moreton House, Abbotsham Road, Bideford, Devon, EX39 3QW

moretonhousedevon@gmail.com

01237 425519    07521531808

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