First impressions…

A lovely welcome at the airport first thing this morning, then straight off to the house. Having been kept up to speed with weekly photos for the last four weeks, I’ve been itching to see the build first hand – happily, the photos have done it justice.

There really are a lot of holes – notably the ones in the floor/ceiling between the two floors. The underfloor heating was going in today, so it was good to see how this is going in (from beneath, so the upstairs timber floor isn’t disturbed, with a single stretch of pipe for each room it’s being installed in – no pipe joins = no leaks).

20140724 Underfloor Heating

It was good to get a better understanding of the retaining wall/ foundation situation too. The original retaining wall is pretty monolithic – it’s 30cm wide at the top, and gets wider to maybe 60cm at the above-ground bottom, before getting even wider underground (possibly another 2m down). It’s also buttressed on the uphill side so it’s even wider again. This is probably why it’s done such a good job so far and will (hopefully) continue to do so. This week, we also received approval to build the extension footing in top of the wall, so that’s another problem solved (thank you Building Control).

Another problem identified this week – there are no lintels above the windows, so the brickwork is lying directly on top of the course of bricks above each window. We’re still working on a fix to this, but it obviously has to be addressed before the new windows go in. Fingers crossed it’s not too expensive, but there are 12 windows and three sets of doors to be worked on, so…

Inside, the space is deceptive. Upstairs, the best thing was seeing the layout as it will be when finished – the walls are down, linking kitchen to dining room, to lounge to snug. It’s a big, continuous space which will be great for family living. Downstairs, where there are fewer changes being made, some of the rooms feel smaller – mainly the master and second bedrooms. But we’re hopeful that they’ll seem bigger with furniture in, and bedrooms are for sleeping, right? There’s plenty of space upstairs for living…

All in all, it was great to see the progress being made and meet the full team – it’s clear that there’s been a lot of hard work going on. It’s a tidy site too, with reports of the inside being hoovered. This is definitely helping to keep our new neighbours on-side with the work, so well done Brickhurst!

20140709 Tidy Site

(Admittedly this snap is a couple of weeks old, but you get the idea…)

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