Sorry folks for the long delay in adding to the blog - events have intervened. Since the last post we have both been extremely busy. Mainly I have been busy with archaeological things. Firstly there was the World Heritage Site conference which took place over most of the weekend 5th-7th May. This was in fact an excellent conference which both Kate and I enjoyed thoroughly. Kate arrived on Friday in the nick of time for dinner with Sir Neil Cossons, and on Saturday we had discussion over an evening meal at Madeley Court.
The following week I decided to paint the bedroom in my evenings (at least Monday-Wednesday), and then on Thursday night it was fencing. On Friday evening I gave a lecture to the Royal Archaeological Institute, who also had a guided tour (with the assistance of Kate) on Saturday. Sunday we went to Bridgnorth and Church Stretton to look for old furniture, but without success (although it was good fun and much tea was had along the way!)
Monday (yesterday) I took as a day off in lieu and spent much of it making structural alterations to the fireplace in the living room...
'Before'. This is after removing the breeze- block wall.
This brick infilling was very interesting. Although much knocked about, it basically seems to have been a mid-nineteenth century modification of the fireplace to incorporate a more modern range. The top row of bricks were simply resting on a row of bricks-on-edge, and were used to block up the original aperture. They appeared to have no structural significance...
...and after some tentative exploration, I knocked them out and discovered indeed that the whole chimney rests entirely on the wooden beam. The beam seems to be part of the wall-plate from an earlier timber-framed building. The chinmey breast is corbelled up from the beam internally. So in the few hours at my disposal I removed as much of the nineteenth century brickwork as possible to expose the original extent of the eighteenth century fireplace.
At the end of yesterday - about half removed. This photo does not do justice to the 'new' extra depth of the fireplace.
This was an extremely dusty and sooty job, with about 200 years of soot coming down on top of me. Also a lot of the voids behind the brick side-walls were filled with dust and rubble. The whole living room now has a nice layer of grey-brown dust all over it! However I am pleased - this will make a fantastic open fireplace!!
This is where a lot of the soot and dust went!
accessibility aerial-cam aircraft Albany ALGAO antiquaries apley archaeology architecture art art nouveau Australia baltic Belgium beverley Birmingham black country Black Country Living Museum blast furnace blog borders Brexit broseley buildings cadw cambridgeshire canals cars castles charities chartership chief executive children chuches CIfA cinema coalbrookdale colonial community conferences conflict conservation contexts CPAT cracow crash cultural heritage culture cumbria cycling dark heritage dark tourism Darwin dawley devolution dialogue Dunsborough EAA earthworks england english heritage estonia EU Europe evolution excavation family family history fields fieldwalking food friends funding furnaces gardens geography geology geophysics governance Habsburg heritage heritage management hertfordshire hinkshay historic environment historical metallurgy society history holiday hotel housing hull IfA india industrial heritage industry instability interdisciplinary iran iraq iron iron age iron rolling ironbridge ironworking jackfield jewish heritage Kakadu landscape landslide latvia lecture legislation linguistics Lithuania local history london manor house marylebone metallurgy middle east mill mining moat monograph moss museums national identity Netherlands Newcomen Nexus Northern Territory painting pakistan Perth planning poland politics of heritage post-colonial pottery preservation professionalism publication railways rambling religion report riga road rock art romania romans ruin salaries sandwell sardines scheduling schools scotland settlements severn shakespeare ships shropshire snow soviet stirchley stirchley furnaces stirchley ironworks stirchley slagworks stratigraphy survey Switzerland syria tallinn teaching telford tenements terrorism theatre timber-framed towns trains transport trustees turkey UK Vilnius volunteers wales west bromwich Western Australia wooden road wrexham wrexham and shropshire wroxeter yorkshire