One thing we are not short of on this build is wasps’ nests! We discovered one in a downstairs wall when they decided to attack the scaffolding team and then our carpenters found another nest when they were stripping out an old dormer window. The wasps had nested under the flat roof and were not happy about having their home demolished. Several stings later the lads had managed to remove the nest although the wasps returned to make their feelings felt throughout the afternoon!

Meanwhile, Will had discovered that floor joists in the old back bedroom – which will form part of the new kitchen – had evidence of woodworm. This meant stripping out all the joists and reconstructing the floor.

A slightly more concerning complication came when the building inspector, on one of his regular visits, pointed out that in our eagerness to remove load-bearing walls inside the house we had probably gone a bit too far! Despite having more than our fair share of acro props supporting everything we were running the risk of the roof spreading and collapsing. He strongly advised that we strip the tiles off the roof to decrease the weight. A quick phone call later and Will had arranged for Paul, our roofer, to send a team to strip the tiles the next morning.

They were so quick and efficient at stripping the tiles – it was very impressive. We breathed a sigh of relief once the tiles were off and stacked safely on the scaffolding. Top tip – probably best not to remove so many walls all in one go!

Since then we have put all the steels in and the roof is fully supported so a couple of days ago Will set his son Jack and his friend Will C to work demolishing the old back wall of the house. This is the wall that separates the old house from the new extension. The lads were doing a great job and had removed about two thirds of the wall when there was a huge bang! The remaining wall section had crashed down into the new extension. To start with they thought this was a great thing as it saved them labouring away taking it down by hand….however it turned out that the weight of the wall had smashed two of the concrete beams in the new block and beam floor. Ooops!

Initially we thought this was going to be a very expensive mistake but Will and the boys were able to order two new beam sections, dig out the blocks, reset the beams and relay some new blocks all fairly quickly and without too much cost.

So now we have opened up the whole of the new kitchen/dining room and living room and can really get an idea of the space that will be created. It’s very exciting and we are looking forward to getting the building water tight so we can really crack on with the plaster boarding and flooring. So much has been achieved in the past two months – let’s hope we can continue at this pace. Everyone is already asking whether our annual Christmas party will be held in the new house – we are confidently saying “Yes”!

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