We bought our barn at the end of 2001. The following summer we spent six weeks living in the woods with a lot of family and friends and started work on the pile of rubble which was the collapsed roof.
One day while out foraging for forage we passed a large barn on a hill and went for a closer look. It was a magnificent construction, several times the size of ours, and felt more like a church.
Although we recognised that it would be a much bigger project than we were prepared to take on, we thought it would make a wonderful home, workshop, gallery, cinema (etc).
Meanwhile back at the ranch we installed a caravan, tidied up the timber...
...removed old stones and broken tiles...
...and generally cleared up.
We decided to level the floor by digging out a little bit of sand piled up in the corner.
This amounted to several cubic metres of the damn stuff and moving it took three days. It also proved to be the ground on which the walls are built... so we did some underpinning.
|(lousy pic of underpinning taken at night - trust me on this)|
By the beginning of September the place looked much better and we could (just) imagine what it might look like with a roof, doors and windows. We went back to UK to decide what we were going to do next.
Over the winter, gravity, which had been waiting patiently for some help, took its toll. All that was needed was a bit of bad weather.
Fortunately, all this would have had to come down anyway - the elements had just reduced the cost. This was the only time we managed that particular feat.
Earlier this year I was passing the BIG barn and went to see how it was getting on. It wasn’t. Someone had started to do some work, they had moved in a caravan, done some tidying up, cleared timber and stones...
and the thing had damn nearly collapsed.
I could have told them that.