Before and after – main bathroom


In many ways this is the room that has gone through the biggest change. At some point what had been one room was divided in two to make a small galley kitchen which you accessed from the front sitting room and a similarly sized bathroom your reached via the original entrance from the stairs.

There was also a kind of kitchen in the basement so it seems this was done to allow various members of the family to live in the house but with their own space, whilst not exactly splitting the house up into flats.

Whilst the blue bathroom suite was kind of cool these rooms needed some change. First of all we took down the dividing wall.

 We had to re-plumb the entire house at the same time.

This also meant we were removing the only kitchen in the house and working sinks. So we had to keep the “kitchen” sink working in this room for a bit while we set up a new cobbled together kitchen in the downstairs front room which was intended to be the new working kitchen for the house. For a while then you could have a bath and do the dishes in the same room.

Then we started to add things back in. We decided to have a walk in shower which you can see the first stages of in the picture above. Much agonising over the rest of the layout, but the bath eventually went in the centre of the room by the window (only downside is that you flash anyone looking in from the garden when you get out of the bath) and we installed a utility cupboard to house the washing machine. This was accompanied by a sheila’s maid to dry the clothes.

And now it looks like this.

In the pink

Progress in the basement flat continues at pace as now it’s all about adding things that make it look better as opposed to stripping off plaster and generally wrecking the place as part of the “battle of the damp”.

Here’s a before shot.

And here’s the best of the interim ones.

The floor has been painted strong white like the rest of the house and the walls are setting plaster also from Farrow and Ball. I really like it, but it’s a slightly depressing colour to use when you pay someone to plaster the walls, then carefully prime them only to paint them basically the same colour as they were before. Again the ceiling is also the same colour and the skirting will be too.

And one of the many deliveries that helped get us there.

The boiler will be boxed in as part of a cupboard.

From this angle you can see the unpainted end of the room which will be a kitchen area. The lighting is already in for that work area.

They are from B&Q.

Still some work to be done on the door and obviously the stairs beyond but you can see the flagstones are back down and looking good.

The view into the bedroom.

And here’s the fireplace with the beautiful tiles that were uncovered when the heater was removed. Unfortunately there’s some pretty extensive damage, although ultimately the plan is for a wood burning stove in here so that might cover the gap and work. We shall see.

Here’s a close up of the lights which are from John Lewis (like the ones in the bedroom). The plan is that a sofa will sit under these.

Off the entrance to the flat is a kind of cellar which sits under the front steps. It was a horrible hole full of coal dust and a bit scary. It’s now had a new floor put in and is ready to act as some handy storage.

The plan is to put another toilet in the space under the hall stairs and because of that some serious digging has been required to put new plumbing in. Which also means going out the back door and particularly using the outside tap is a bit tricky.

And lastly, also outside some of the holes in the patio filled from our large supply of random bricks.

Basement gets water and light (well nearly)

Work continues on the basement. It’s all pipes down there.

This is the hall area where the flat joins with the main part of the house. It’s so luxurious it even has a radiator.  Ooh.

This is the view into the bathroom.

The barrier at the top of these steps is to stop the dog going down, jumping the last step and then getting trapped down there. She doesn’t seem to be learning from this mistake. We are still missing a bottom step hence the problem.

This radiator is to go in the bedroom under the french doors / long window. It’s only from B&Q and seems to be the perfect size.

The front room / open plan kitchen still needs some work. Although we do have a boiler now.

Is it more depressing to have a wheelbarrow in your lounge…

…or a cement mixer in your bedroom?

What does look great is the office, set up as a music studio for Klaus. The half-door I think is a great idea of his.

The pigeon holes/ shelves in here are from Graham and Green.

The next steps are to tile the bathroom and put in the toilet etc which we have already bought. Hopefully this next stage should see some swift improvements.

In the pipeline

Work is well underway now with the plumbing and rewiring. The plumbing is for the central heating but also to replace some of the pipes in the house which are not the best. We’ve spent £1000 on copper so far, not the most exciting purchase ever. Here’s some.

and some more..

Because all this is happening we have no hot water and so we’ve been temporarily forced out and are staying with some very kind friends. The dogs are also still away too and with bear traps like this as you come in the front door we really can’t safely have them back as yet.


hole inside front door


I have already stepped into this several times, mainly when struggling with yet another section of carpet we are removing to allow access for the plumbers and also because it needs to be replaced. 

Here are some images of the pipes going in.


sitting room


looking into the first floor sitting room




All the boards that have been lifted will be carefully replaced as at least on the ground floor we intend to have exposed floorboards. We have about another week and a half to go as we have to wait for the new system to be linked up to the mains water plus we need the radiators to arrive. 

We’ve gone for radiators that look like this for most room, although we are sourcing them via a friend so hope they will be cheaper.