Monday, 27 August 2012

Summer 2012 ,a round up

There is a sense of chill in the air, the evenings have noticeably shortened and the damp, grey, Scottish weather has descended - all perfect conditions for avoiding doing any outside work, finishing early and catching up on the blog !

 It also helps re-inspire me that we are getting somewhere and have indeed already been somewhere - even if it wasn't anywhere off the farm !

First stop for summer reminiscence, the glass house, and a hastily gobbled strawberry to console the fact that this year is proving to be very poor for growing much at all other than strawberries and some flowers !

 Much of the summer has been spent doing the same old things as always , knocking stuff down, digging stuff up and picking up the never ending rubbish. At long last I found some interesting rubbish and it wasn't made of plastic ! An old broken plate dated 1797, which was rather amusing to think of someone else working here, having their dinner, breaking the plate and throwing it in the field. I rather liked the fruits and flowers it depicted - a small hint to the excitement and aesthetic beauty of the walled garden in its first few years (built about 1806)

In yet another small step towards re-attaining that garden , a little bit more 1980's shed was sent tumbling ...

with some help from Peter S...

..."Mr Hilti"...

...and "Sister Sledge"...

maybe there is light at the end of the tunnel ?

On the other side of the wall  , the former chicken poo shed  (which used to look like this when viewed from glasshouse door)...

...was eventually dug up and dumpered away, reseeded...

...and now looks like this (viewed in opposite direction back towards glasshouse door)...

 Just below, the lower field had become really overgrown since the mules had left, and the local farmer sent round the flail mower to recover it...

...just in time for the camping season ! First a group from the Venchie came to stay...

...and then we got to go go camping for the first ever time as a family - the most easily organised summer holiday ever . "Kids we're going on holiday... to the field !".   Four nights out proved that it could actually be quite a good campsite with a bit more organisation (I'll add that to the "to-do list")

More visitors came and went...


...and some are still here !

My brother Sam and Aprils' sister, Lorraine, are in the process of moving to this area permanently (along with Amber and Adam of course!).  Hello !

Other visitors came to try Bonnyriggs biggest waterslide ...

...  big enough for adults even !

And all the while the grass grew, hiding away all that hard work of previous months...

(remember just the other day ?)

Even the tractor is slowly being transformed. A complete engine rebuild is now almost complete thanks to Dad, which means thats the whole front half now as good as new. Well it will be if it starts and keeps going !

Whats next on the list then?

With winter approaching and memories of the kids bedroom being 12 degrees Celcius last year, I though I'd give it a "make-over". I had to wait for Listed Building Consent because of its... erm...historic importance...

oh yes look , theres a bit of Georgian cornice just there !  V

Sorry, where ?

No, nothing historic to see here , even the 'Time Team' wouldn't find anything  ...

...except ROT.

Lots of rot. In fact if it was made of wood, its now made of rot. Here's a newish bit of wood that was helping hold the rot together...

Well that floor will not be rotting away again...ever !

...just as well since I'm getting a bit rusty !  I'd forgotten how stressful doing concrete floors can be.

...just not as stressful as finding that the base of the roof above has rotted away as well !

The whole roof needs jacked up, a bit at a time and the 'wall plate' and many rafter 'feet' need replaced as well as fitting some new concrete lintels. There are clear signs (cracked plaster & sunken roof line) that this will be the case for much of the house. Major amounts of work just to stabilise the existing structure await.

"I think this is going to take a little while kids !"

I was  going to do our room as well before the winter but I think that might need wait till. I suspect that we'll be "going on holiday to the caravan" for a long time next year.

The immediate intention after this room is to get the tractor finished, barn cleared out and demolished before the severe winter weather blows the whole thing away.

Best jump to it then!

Hope you enjoyed your summer too !

Reuben Welch

PS, More up to date news at the Grove Farm Facebook page if you've not found it yet


  1. You will, of course, reinstate the Georgian cornice? ;)

    1. Yes, I've even found somewhere that can match them already !
      I'm planning on matching the original door woodwork/ skirting as well eventually although this might need wait until the whole house has been re-floored .