The last of the demolition

In April we were preparing for our windows to arrive so the final part of demolition was carried out to remove the ugly (in my opinion of course) old reinforced concrete balcony to the front of the house.

The front of the house is the only side which has been rendered over the years as modifications have been made including at one point an external loo on the balcony to the left hand side where the original stonework was removed and it was tiled with internal floor tiles. The demolition exposed the stone work and reinforced our intention to clean off the render and bring it back to stone. This is something that is in conflict with the recommendations of the habitat department in our area who want us to re-render the facade fully and do not want it to be pierre apparante like the rest of the house. As we are insulating the inside of the house we do not wish to render the outside. They also don't want us to keep the existing metal balcony which I wish to reposition to the centre and install two simple ones left and right. Instead I either have to find a money tree and have 2 exactly the same hand-made or have all 3 the same and newly made as cheap as you like. BUT I want to keep the old one...finally they want our ciporex infill (which we intend to plaster with lime plaster similar colour to the stonework surround) to be replaced with glass (this would be very expensive to have made to a similar quality as the windows - triple glazed) or an alumininum facade (which reminds me of a shop front so no thanks). As I result we have to forgo the opportunity of a subvention (grant) to make nice the facade - but hey ho I'd rather do it as we want to even if it means we have to live with it half finished for a while longer.

We also took the opportunity whilst we had the digga to flatten and level the garden. The round cover is for the large rainwater tank we buried last year.![](upload://3E5Y8zUz7ENnhiM2hRDO2iUjPe9.jpg)

Next step - windows

I'll make pictures of the ones I have built and am still about to do the last 4m worth of. Some stones I used weighed over 200kg though, good old Archimedes principle levers and then pyramid stone rollers...

Brian, at some point I intend to use them to build a few stone walls around the garden...better do a course in dry stone walling and get some strong gloves!

Seeing your piles of stones, we have several and so does everybody else so are concluding that if there is no future use for France ever it can be converted into a large rockery for the rest of the world... Either that or fill in the Channel and be done with all the nonsense with tunnel and ferries. ;-)