Diary of the house build

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April 2002

The kitchen was fitted over the weekend of 6th/7th April, but the timing was looking a bit tight. However, it was great to have a kitchen sink (even if we couldn’t yet pull the plug). The oak floor in the sitting room was also laid over the same weekend; the random width planks were nailed to the battens with secret nails and then stained and waxed over two days later in the week.

Monday 8th April - a year since the start of the build. The water inspector and a supervisor, complete with “special” equipment, turned up. They were very helpful, but still could not locate the pipe because it was so deep (they thought possibly 3m deep). They said they would bring in a 7-ton digger from Telford the next day, and finally about midday on the Tuesday the water main was located, about 2-3m deep. Now we just had to wait for our drains to be connected to the sewer. A week to our official moving-in date!

Meanwhile, we exhausted ourselves moving some of the smaller items into the house using our trailer, and on the Friday, our heavy furniture was moved in. This was also the day that the Go-Store and portaloo were taken away. It was lovely to see them go at last; fortunately a friendly builder lent us the keys to his garage which had emergency facilities.

On the Sunday we moved the cats in - at long last. The poor things looked quite bewildered surrounded by boxes and very busy people but at least they would see more of us than they had in the past year.

Monday 15th April - our final moving in day. We were delighted to see our digger driver Dave Davies arrive to start the sewage connection. His pick-up was closely followed by his digger, a tractor with a trailer full of stone, and a lorry load of traffic cones, traffic lights etc. Within a very short time the road had been coned off and work had started; they thought the sewer would be 1.7m deep at the spot they had picked for the correct angle to join the sewer. It turned out to be 1.8m deep, so their measurements were fairly accurate. Now that it had started, the work was done and approved very speedily. By the Wednesday we could have a bath at last (whether we needed it or not …).

We were in, and the house connected to the mains drainage, but there still remained plenty to do - all the hard standing and drivework, the terrace, and of course the garden would keep us occupied for many months.

We hope that the story of our house build is interesting to those embarking on the same kind of project. If you want to ask us anything, please feel free to contact us.