Cowieswells is a derelict farm south of Stonehaven in NE Scotland. We were lucky enough to acquire the place in August 2010 when we were moving back to the UK from Norway and looking for something to match or even better our previous, fjord-side home. The farm house and steading (barns) command an impressive and exposed cliff top location with fantastic views across the North Sea. The buildings were constructed from sandstone in a traditional style and our goal in rebuilding it is to be sympathetic to the original design whilst creating a much larger house which is modern, efficient and maximizes the unique views.

Since we bought the place we have spent over a year working with architects, planners and generally doing stuff that doesn't make for interesting reading. This blog picks up the renovation process in late 2011 when work outside got started. Over the coming months it will be updated every week or so with pictures, movies and the odd bit of text. Like Grand Designs but without the suave sarcasm of Kevin McCloud.

Sunday, 24 March 2013

The Heat is On!

The end is so close we can literally smell it!
The builders reckon that they will be finished on Tuesday next week, yep in 2 days!
We where down there today and the work that has been done in the last few weeks is pretty damned impressive, especially considering the storms that have been hitting the UK. Personally I doubt they will finish quite that soon but its very close.

All the ground works are pretty much done. Where there was the Somme it now resembles a garden, amazing transformation. All the structure is now in place, just needs planting and seeding. It makes a massive difference to the feel for the whole place.

From battlefield to patio in 3 weeks!
Patio and sunken garden. The square hole in the fore ground will have a hot tub in it. 
Area between the the house and bothy, sheltered spot for a cup of coffee on a summers morning
So after being amazed by the progress outside we headed in. A sign on the door said that they heating was on! That's a bonus! Inside it felt warm (only 11 degrees) but warmer than it has been for about 3 years. Things are progressing, the bathrooms still need some tiling and plumbing and Dougal the electrician is in for a very busy day on monday if the Tuesday deadline is to be met. Overall though I think they could be finished by the end of next week. Its so exciting! 

That's a good sign...
11.1 degrees - the evidence
This is where all that warmth is coming from. Think I might need a degree in engineering to understand it
Main living area basically finished except got a clean up 
Main bathroom - some tiling and plumbing still to do there

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Short Update

Its been quiet on the blog front but that is primarily because I have been away and things are very busy on the work front at the moment. Was in Argentina in the field for two weeks and then in Norway for a couple of days, back to Stavanger tomorrow so not much spare time for the house.

The big news is that we should be finished by next Tuesday! Yes really next week! That's when we plan for the final inspection and potential hand over subject to minor bits and bobs being corrected. We were getting sceptical that they would get it done before the baby arrives, but it seems like it might just happen...

Was on site today to answer a few questions and its bedlam there. About 15 vans and trucks parked outside and all sorts of tradesman zipping past each other to get their bits finished in time. It's super-exciting!

Will post more at the weekend and next week including pictures...