CONVERTED! RESTORATION GIRL EXPOSES MYSTERIOUS FEATURES AT FARMAGEDDON

Type hashtag #barnconversion into Instagram if you dare……

And here’s me thinking that Farmageddon was post-apocalyptic. There are some pretty extreme builds going on out there, but if there’s one thing to say about my new community of Barn Buddies: they sure do have vision. For BB’s, even the most humble, crumbling, asbestos-choked hovel is ripe for miraculous conversion. There is nothing BB’s love more than that exquisite flicker of horror crossing the faces of the uninitiated. I love our motley crew.

The BB’s got me thinking about why some people enjoy working with barns and agricultural buildings. Perhaps part of the fun of renovating a barn is uncovering pieces of its industrial past and repurposing them beautifully into the building. I thought it would be fun to share some of these architectural features and how we’re working them into our design at Farmageddon.  (Plus a few little progress photos at the end… 😉

VENTILATION SLITS (“ARROW SLITS”)

When our barns were built in the 18th and 19th century, they were often stacked to the gunnels with loose hay and straw stacks. The ventilation slits were incorporated to stop the haystacks heating up and spontaneously combusting.  We have a number of these arrow slits at first floor level, and we were excited to uncover a couple more.

We’re glazing the historic arrow slits to create little features dotted around the house. We love them so much, we’ve borrowed the principle to create new arrow slit-style windows where there were no openings previously. Where “housey” windows were originally designed, we created industrial, arrow slits in steel – I can’t wait for these to be fitted!

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HORSE ENGINE MILL

In the early twentieth century, the horse engine at Farmageddon was used to mill grain for feed and other uses. The horse would walk around a wheel which in turn powered various bits of kit. The only remaining evidence is the enormous oak beam in what will be our office. The beam had to be substantial in order to support the horse engine equipment; the tree was literally hewn down, bark still intact, and placed in the barn.

 

We love this beast and we are featuring it above a new exposed stone wall in the office, treating it to a gentle wash and scrub to bring out the colour of the oak and to preserve the bark and gorgeous gnarly bits!  Work in progress….

 

 

BREWHOUSE/WASHHOUSE

What a bonus – a potential micro-brewery in our garden! The former piggery-cum-stables-cum-henhouse contains evidence of many little cottage industries. Inside the end room is a fireplace with a copper above and a wee chimney – perhaps evidence of a little brewhouse used for domestic beer brewing (or it could have been a little washhouse). According to Historic England, few examples of these remain so we are pretty excited to have one here at Farmageddon.

 

These buildings will eventually be preserved and used for garden/domestic storage, a kennel and maybe a henhouse.

CART SHEDS AND COACH HOUSE

Some of my favourite features of this place are the beautiful cart shed doorways with their magnificent arched brick piers.   The larger door may have been a coach house – in fact a picture exists from the late 1800s of the farmer Mr Teasdale in front of these very doors with a resplendent horse and coach.

The arches are central to our design and will be host to some pretty funky steel windows which will be uplit in all their glory.

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PREACHING TO THE CONVERTED

Every visit to Farmageddon converts me.   Perhaps I’m becoming immune to the chaos or perhaps we are making genuine progress. Either way, it’s true love.

 

Until next time, Kat xx

 

Three Girls Orchard Apple Juice (our juice is surprisingly yummy hurray!)

If only our three girls would all look the same direction for one photo, let alone an entire photoshoot! However they are the rather naughty and positively defiant inspiration for our little Yorkshire apple juice brand.  600 kilos of fruit from the orchard was heroically harvested by our good friend Geoff who spent a week picking amongst warbling pheasants, brooding hens and clucking builders :-).

(The famous Three Girls helped last year so I promised to put in some pictures of them):

The fruit was delivered to the lovely Joe at Yorkshire Wolds Juice and he worked his magic……

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Milling the apples and hey Pressto….
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Filling up the fine nectar!

 

 

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Juice coming off the line….

 

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Bottles pasteurising, capped and ready to go.

 

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491 Bottles of Three Girls Orchard Apple Juice

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Yummy!  So, what does Three Girls Orchard Juice taste like?  I think it tastes of Yorkshire.   It’s bold, it’s brassy, its sharp and honest and it’s full of taste :-).

Until next time…..  Kat xxxx

 

 

Raising the Roof!

‘Twas Restoration Girl’s birthday and what better way to celebrate but crawling over roofs, wading in mud and porting a fetching high vis birthday suit.  This little post is a mini-update on progress….it’s that exciting phase of demolition where every time you go to site, something new and important has happened. And something new and a bit scary is revealed….

First the good news.  The roof is coming off and we’ve not yet found any nasties besides the usual (but WTF….when demolished, the place looks exactly like the attic in The Blair Witch Project.  Minus the creepy red handprints.  Eeek!)

The walls are coming down too, revealing some beautifully proportioned spaces.  With the sunlight streaming in, I can really imagine feeling warm and cosy living in these rooms.

The internal stone work is going to look fabulous when repointed – I’m so excited about that.

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But it looks like we’re going to have to underpin part of the large granary barn because the foundations are too shallow.  I’m amazed that these gorgeous old places haven’t fallen down over 300-odd years and of course they are all built directly onto the mud which always comes as a shock to us modern-era types.

It’s been an eventful week!  Thanks for reading dear friends.  Next time we’ll take a break from covering the build and talk about a new, yummy little sideline at Farmageddon ♥.

Until next time… Kat xxxx