Thursday, December 22, 2011

Last day of construction work before Christmas

As well as being the shortest day, today was the last day of work on site for a while - except for Chris and Pete that is, who are continuing to sort things out inside the Mill.

Whittles are now on holiday until 3rd January and their ground works subcontractors Pyes have taken a slightly longer break, and will be returning later that week.

So before I switch the computer off for Christmas(?) here are a few photos of where work was up to this afternoon...

First floor joists have now been fitted in the first three houses.  You can see the coat of plaster where they are fixed to the blockwork - that is there to ensure that airtightness is maintained.  Getting the floor joists in will give the bricklayers something to stand on so the walls should rise more quickly again in the New Year
Terrace C foundations are underway.  The black pipes sticking up are for the district heating.  Note also that the guard rails along the river bank have been fitted over the past couple of days.  

This is the gable end of building 2, where the guest rooms will be.
We were hoping to reuse the wall that was here but it ended up having to be rebuilt.

Looking up Forgebank Walk from outside plot 10 (no 14)

The attenuation pipe is finally in on terrace D.  No more pecking away at rock thankfully.  There is a manhole still to go in outside plot 17 (no 21)

The new owners of the Forge have kindly agreed ;-) to let us dump a pile of rock in their parking spaces whilst we work out how best to use it!  This has been pecked out from Terrace D.  It is the right sort of rock to go into gabions but unfortunately most of it is the wrong size for that, and even a bit big for drystone walling!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Arnside YHA 3 years on...

Three years ago (was it really that long ago!?) 11 households met at Arnside YHA to discuss a new potential site for our project - "Halton Mills"; we discussed the opportunities, the risks, how we could afford it, our negotiation strategy, etc.

This weekend 22 households met en-masse to sign our Agreement to Lease for their homes on that very site. Others not able to attend the meeting have signed their agreements in advance, making a total of 34.

We have traveled a long, long way in that time! Negotiations for the purchase, designs for the site and our homes, planning permission, tenders for the construction, grant applications, bank loan searches and subsequent negotiations, and now to the build.

The end is in sight. Hurrah!!

Fiona and Patrice started off the proceedings with a some uplifting music to get us in the mood, followed by careful thinking to make sure we had the numerous dates and signatures in the right places. Note: Taking videos is NOT one of my skills ;o)

In the meantime the children were either occupied by balloons or by... zzzzz....


Thursday, December 1, 2011

Progress on site - latest pictures

It's a while since I've posted any pictures from the site so here's an update of what's been going on over the past few weeks:
The rock bolting on the cliff face next to terrace D has been completed.
The rock can now be left exposed rather than being covered in safety netting.

These are the last few rock bolts going in.  The stone buttress just above here will be pointed.

There is still some work before this trench through the rock is deep enough to accommodate the surface water attenuation pipe.  At least the higher than expected rock levels will mean that less concrete will need to be used in the foundations.

The rock on the right is to be broken up smaller and used to fill gabion baskets

The foundations for terrace F are taking shape

...and a huge manhole is being constructed to take the sewage down from  Mill Lane to Forgebank Walk

this shows the square at the east end of terrace B 

in terrace A, boxes for the doors and windows have been installed

...whilst those for the other terraces are being made in the Mill.
You can see the wood chip store and boiler house being built in the background

Nothing happening at the boathouse yet - but we are sorting out the Environment Agency consent for the viewing platform which will run along the south side of the building overlooking the river

At the far end of the site we are exposing the rock face adjacent to the emergency turning area and picnic site, and removing all the trees growing out of it so that it can be properly examined and made safe