Welcome to Melanie’s June & July News! It has been extremely busy here in the last couple of months, hence why we didn’t have a blog newsletter last month. As you can see from the photos below we have been busy with more renovations. This promises to be the last.
We have completed all of the other planned works over the last 12 years and this one – the roof, has almost been like adding a comfort blanket over the top of the cottage to keep it snug and warm. Literally! Many readers might already know that our cottage is old, possibly 1700’s with a thatched roof. So this isn’t the original roof. Our current roof dates from around 1860.
When we moved in, 12 years ago, the roof comprised of a few batons and some slates. Inside, the ceiling was either simply hardboard or old tongue in grove wood. In the roof space there was a small amount of old rock wool insulation running down the centre, so it was pretty cold. No felt under the slates and no proper insulation. So a few years after we moved in, we removed the ceilings from the inside, added cellotex insulation and plaster boarded the ceiling. It was a good measure at that early stage but of course we always knew the roof required some kind of serious maintenance.
Since moving here we have had some harsh winters where the water tanks and pipes in the roof have frozen. Snow has blown in under the slates and eventually melted down through the plasterboard and down the beams. We have also had a mouse gnaw through an alkathene water pipe up there and water dripped through the ceiling in the middle of the night.
So the decision was made to remove all of the tanks and pipework in the attic and have a new combi boiler. We had that all done in June. We then took off all of the slates, rebattoned, added felt insulation called TLX Gold, repaired all of the old and rotten woodwork, replaced the old roof windows for new larger ones and put back all of the slates.
I say ‘we’! We did help from time to time, however we have a wonderful roofer called Leigh (in the photo at the top of the page) who has reroofed our studio in the past and completed work on our chimneys. He very kindly did all of the work for us, along with his buddy Mike! They have both been lovely to have around for the last 5 weeks.
In the photo above you can just make me out emptying the attic of all of the old rock wool insulation. Yes, I was brave and went up on the roof! It was replaced with a new style insulation called TLX Silver.
The photo above shows the front of the cottage with Leigh on the roof and Mike climbing down the ladder. In the photo below you can see the new roof windows, with the old slates put back in place. The scaffolding was great fun to climb up on…
This is the view from the scaffolding at the back of the cottage. You can see Lily laying on the ground below. If only we could have kept the scaffolding as a veranda!!
While the scaffolding was up Nicholas took the opportunity to repoint and repaint the chimneys. The photos below show them and the re-slated roof at it’s best.
Everything looks and feels so much more sturdy and solid now. It was a great job done! Scaffolding is down and so all we have to do now is paint the cottage….!
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