As the summer tried to come to an end, the Two-Legs finally got round to some construction. A day was spent working out how to get the plans and the reality to match! The plans were drawn up from the barn when it was still standing in its original site.  Our measurements come from the barn as it is now, refurbished and at its new location.  Surprisingly, after a bit of crap maths, and a lot of string and bits of wood, we got paper and metal to match!

DSC_7029The picture above shows the outer edge of all the foundation trenches marked out, ready for the arrival of the digger.  The humans used up the last of their holiday for the year, and on Monday morning a ‘micro-digger’ arrived on hire from a local firm (A E Faulks Ltd).  I took a cursory look at this rather small affair  (I’m a big fan of machinery, tractors and land-rovers are my favourites)

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and went inside for a second breakfast.  Meanwhile, Rob attempted to learn to use the myriad controls of the so-called digger.  By late morning, and after quite a lot of ineffectual thrashing about, a water supply trench had been started.

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Rob thrashing around in the undergrowth during the digger learning phase of trench excavation

A day later, the trench was complete, all the way to the road, where it will join the mains.  Digging unearthed another load of jars and bottles to add to the collection.  Once this was done, work started on the foundations proper.

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Me supervising the soil removal, in my PPE

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Katie doing a bit of light trench smoothing

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DSC_7101Katie and Rob formed a proficient team digging the trenches to the correct depth and width to accommodate  the tyres.  Chris helped out with removing the huge quantities of soil and rubbish coming out of the ground, adding to the already voluminous bund separating the site from the road.

Later in the week, Spencer and Dave and Tony (Rob’s dad) came over. Dave helped out with the trench levelling and Tony laid sand in the water trench, while Katie went to work.  Spencer was useless as ever, chasing sticks and rushing about – wouldn’t catch me losing my dignity like that…I was acting as foreman for the day!

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By the end of the week, we had dug out half of the trenches for the foundations, and flattened and levelled them all off, with the help of Guy and Viv.  We had shifted approximately 15 tonnes of soil, and a small bit of recalcitrant concrete from one of the barn footings that jutted into a trench!DSC_7083

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