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Norton Canon oak framed extension


Nick and Mary got in touch to see if we could help them design and build an oak framed extension to their quirky half-timbered cottage between Kington and Hereford. Previous owners had obtained planning permission and made a start on the groundworks (see below) before giving up on the project and selling up.

groundworks

We arranged a site meeting, discussed various options, and quickly settled on the outline of a design which we then firmed up with some detailed frame drawings. Open plan downstairs with oak joists and stairwell, raised collar trusses on the first floor with central purlin, ridge and windbracing.

The drawings were signed off by Nick and Mary, we ordered the oak, and set to work in the workshop when the next slot became available.

Castle Ring Oak Frame workshp

Issues we had to contend with on this project were: a wonky old building to connect to, a less then perfectly level base, difficult access for the crane, and not enough room for a wraparound scaffold.

What we didn’t have to worry about was the weather (it was perfect!) and Nick and Mary’s unbeatable hospitality. I should perhaps explain that they are fully committed smallholders with sheep, geese, chickens, polytunnels, bees, smokehouse and probably multiple other bits I didn’t notice or can’t remember. Suffice to say our pack lunch boxes were soon kicking around redundantly as we tucked in to a multitude of delectable home made, home produced goodies. Future clients be warned – Nick and Mary have raised the bar! We were even sent on out way with a further hamper of loveliness.

Castle Ring Oak Frame

The finished frame in all it’s glory tucked up against an older version

Getting started on the frame with not a lot of scaffold to play with

Castle Ring Oak Frame

Girding rail being located into a baypost with corner bracing

Rob Dawson Castle Ring

In goes a wallplate

Castle Ring Oak Frame

Lowering the pack of floor joists onto the slab

Castle Ring Oak Frame

…so we can handball them into place. We even got Russell the crane driver helping out!

Little tap with a mallet as they drop into the pockets

Castle Ring Oak Frame

By lunchtime we were ready for the 3 trusses, so we make them all up on trestles

Oak frame extension

…and stacked them against the wallframe

Oak frame

Flying the central truss with arch collar braces in to place

Castle Ring Oak Frame

Now for the roof. Central purlin dropping into its housing

Castle Ring Oak Frame Jake

Now for the ridge. Note the mortice for a “spline” to pull the ridge pieces together. Nice face Jake!

Oak framed extension

Mary joining in the fun knocking pegs in

Frame raising

Seems like the crane is having a rest on the frame

Castle Ring Oak Frame

Joisted lean to off the side of the main frame

Wind braces

Wind braces glowing in the late afternoon sun

Oak extension

The Master Bedroom

Nick and Mary watching from a safe distance

The raising was a reminder of how lucky we are to do this kind of work, and a pleasure from start to finish. Yes, hard work, but hugely rewarding to see a project through from start to finish. Making stuff is good!

Thanks to Nick for taking and donating most of the photos.

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