Clearing a channel through the rubble was the first step in locating the septic tank.
I started to dig out the hole for the septic tank by hand as the top soil layers were quite easy going.

The new septic tank would be uphill of the house so I worked out the depth of the pipe runs starting from the lowest outfall point which was in the street at the front of the house. The ground was very sticky and heavy here.

The subsoil in the hole is highly compacted and is proving almost impossible to continue by hand.
I will ask around and see if anyone has a suitable machine. JCB's are very rarely seen.

Stanislav in the next village has a tractor and back actor and comes to the rescue.
After a bit of negotiation I agree to pay him what I think is multiple times what his tractor is worth, but needs must and I am still gratefull or I would still be digging in the hole now.

30th April 2009 

The onions are doing very well, weeds are coming through, must get hoeing but the garlic seems to be struggling



The hole left by the digger was very roughly shaped and needed a ton of work levelling up with a shovel.

The concrete base of the septic tank completed and the walls constructed.

I designed the septic tank with two sections: the larger one as an initial settlement tank joined to the secondary settlement tank by a postbox hole positioned in the separating wall below the water level to prevent any floating solids from passing through.

In the abscence of catnik lintels I decided to cast the lintel for the patio door in situ.
A wooden box was formed across the span with a steel re-enforcing cage inside suspended by wire.
The open top of the box was tied to the sides to prevent splaying during filling.

The rear extension walls are built and the pillars that will be supporting the roof beam are coming along.

The kitchen walls are finally finished and the timber frames for the rear extension erected.
I managed to lift the rear extension cross beam onto the pillars by spanning the walls with heavy timber and placing a step ladder onto them - decidedly dodgy moment!

The joists are fixed with joist hangers onto the wall plate.

The rear extension walls and roof are covered with stirling board.

Insulation laid onto a strong waterproof plastic membrane over the top of a blinded granite base in the kitchen. Re-enforcing laid over the top ready for the concrete base.

Installed the double glazed window in the kitchen and framed it with timber to finish.

14th June 2010 

Screed laid over the underfloor heating in the entrance hall

20th June 2010 

Underfloor heating PEX pipes in the kitchen

27th June 2010 

Constructing the chimney in the Kitchen.

The new chimney starts to appear above the roof.



Plastering the kitchen walls on a very hot day.
Karen said that she would prefer the finish not to be too smooth and new looking, preferring an older, rustic appearance. No worries there I thought. I would go for the ultimate smooth finish and hey presto - rough and rustic!