During all of this work, Dean was having tests and still getting nowhere nearer to find the cause of his condition, we were
very frustrated by it. Dean was very weak, and found physical work exhausting. However, one day we decided to pull out the
fire in the living room, as we wanted to open up the room, by removing the sliding door between this room and the dining room,
the fire had been built into one wall, the one with the door in. On removing the fire, we noticed a smaller fireplace had
been blocked off by concrete blocks, and we thought we would open this up, to expose the old fire place, this we did, only
to find that there had originally been an inglenook fireplace there, what an exciting find. We decided to open this up, and
to have the original fireplace showing. This meant to remove all of the old bricks, and take it back to the granite bocks
of the original wall. This uncovered the old fireplace, four feet wide and five feet high. This space was filled with soot,
seventeen wheelbarrows full in total, which Dean did manage to remove. The room was filled with coal dust, a film covered
everything in sight.
On finding this fireplace, it prompted us to choose to have a cast iron, solid fuel stove installed,
and we began to look for one. We needed to have the flu re-lined, with stainless steel tubing, this turned out to be the most
expensive job we'd undertaken to date, but we were so keen to have the stove, that we went ahead with it. We had to wait a
while for the flu company to import the tubing, so meanwhile we went on with other jobs.
During a visit from my daughter
and her husband, we decided to remove the angled wall in the dining room, which had also been made of chipboard. When this
was removed, we found the back of yet another flu. Not wishing to have another stove put into the dining room, we decided
that we would have the front of this flu built up again, this time using granite blocks, that the house was built of, we had
some of these already, as we had needed to remove the blocks from the bedroom, under the window, which had by now been replaced.
So these blocks were used to re-build the fireplace wall in the dining room. We also then decided to have the dining room
window changed into a doorway, ie the main entrance, and to have the current doorway, which was in the kitchen, changed into
a window, we didn't like the idea of the main entrance leading into the already small kitchen.
By now we were having
all of the windows replaced by double glazing, which we found also entailed having new lintels put in above them.
re-pointed the mortar in the dining room walls, and painted them white, brightening up the house no end, though the re-pointing
was a difficult job for us amateurs. We also painted inside the walls of the living room fireplace, which showed off the new
stove to good effect.
At this stage we had work being carried out in almost every room in the house, the bathroom being
the only one left unaltered.