Monday, November 08, 2010

House building

The renovation and building on the house is coming on fast. You can see the photos on my Flickr House Renovation set.

We've reached the point where we need to decide what to do about the central heating, we've been looking at a system called Thermaskirt. At the weekend they had a stand at the Homebuilding and Renovations show in Harrogate, so we went to it, and met with our builder there.

Trip to Harrogate - Homebuilding & Renovating Show

Saturday was a really gorgeous sunny day for our trip to Harrogate. The trees still had quite a lot of leaves, and we saw some lovely autumn colours, the beeches especially seemed to glow in the sun.

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Took photos from the car as we travelled, they're up as a set of 94 (!!!) on Flickr here.

I really enjoy photo shooting from the car, there's a randomness that takes over! :-D I was taking a shot up the side of a house when we were stopped at traffic lights, and just at the crucial moment a pedestrian walked past, completely unaware. I think he made the shot.

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When we got home and I loaded the pictures up to the computer I was amazed at stuff that we just hadn't noticed at the time. Round Bradford (I think) there are still quite a few old factory chimneys, and a lot of them are totally festooned in mobile phone transmitters. Here's one example.

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And once we noticed those in the pics we started noticing all the other ones too...

Coming into the centre of Harrogate we drove past the Winter Gardens, where there was "The World's biggest Real Ale and Cider Festival". Sadly we didn't make it to it, I was just too knackered after going round the show. But I did take a pic of it for John. Goes on till Sunday 14 November, so maybe we should go back next weekend. ;-)

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We drove all round the Harrogate International Centre trying to find parking, but their car park was full. Hardly surprising at midday on a Saturday! We finally managed to park outside the Royal Baths (a Chinese Restaurant), just across the road from the centre.

Discrete Heat (Thermaskirt people) had a brilliant position in the exhibition hall, just inside the entrance! "Mr Thermaskirt" himself, Martin Wadsworth, spoke to us. He seemed to me to be particularly good at including someone in a wheelchair in the conversation, looking at me from time to time to check that I didn't have questions. John did most of the tech talk though, as by the time we arrived I was pretty brain dead from the journey.

We collected samples of the lambs tongue skirting, and the deco, which is what will run along (laid flat rather than upright) below the bifold doors I think.

We trundled round most of the rest of the show afterwards. Saw some amazing glass wall panels and splash backs from a Cheshire firm called The House of Ugly Fish. It's worth clicking through for the large images in their Gallery to get an idea of the effect.

Really exciting colour, just sang out compared to all the other stuff at the show, which was either neutral colour or to do with solar PV panels! ;-) I exaggerate a bit, but there were a huge number of solar and ground-heat pump firms there. At this point in time we're not really thinking about going down the solar route (unless we win the prize draw we entered!), but it's useful to get the info.

I don't think John particularly noticed, but there was one stand with a lot of light oak furniture, really beautiful dining tables. Out of our price range, but lovely just to look at and drool a bit over! ;-) They did rather nice chairs too.

The show was very crowded, and pretty noisy as well. But it was fun seeing some of the stuff there, and I think was well worth the effort. And it was a lovely day for a drive too, which helped.

On the way home we cut off down a little side lane going towards a village called Weeton. There was an obvously "Grand Design" type build going on, just a bit after going under the railway bridge, that we smiled at. It's amazing how much you begin to notice builds and alterations when you're in the throes yourself! We parked up for a while just past that and a few other houses.

John had a 3 bean salad, and I had a stiff gin and tonic. Much needed after all the noise and people in the show. It was very quiet, despite only being a little way off the main drag. Birdsong (not sure if robin or dunnock), and I thought I saw some Guinea fowl running along the other side of the hedge. Good view of Almscliffe Crag between the trees, which John would now like to go and climb!

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Lots more images of the Crag on Flickr if you search, including some wonderful shots of views of it in snow.

Sunday we went to the garden, and John planted a LOT of garlic. I did some gentle pruning. Grass could do with a mow, but it was far too wet. John tells me that one of his colleagues said there was heavy rain in Liverpool on Saturday. We had a lovely sunny journey to Harrogate, and dry on the way back too, so that was a bit of a surprise.

We finally managed to order the induction hob from John Lewis on Sunday morning, by phone (Jump up and down with joy - we didn't have to drive in to L1 and go to the shop!). It's been out of stock for a while, and I was getting a bit worried it wouldn't be available by the time the kitchen guys come in.

Both of us seem to be sneezing a lot and have runny noses. I'm hoping it'll have cleared up by the weekend.

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