Home / My Rutland Life (Page 4)

  • Red Kites over Rutland

    Red Kites over Rutland

    A pair of red kites is nesting in a tree in a quiet corner on the edge of my village. There has been quite a lot of coverage lately about the way that these beautiful birds have multiplied with a lot of help from various conservation bodies. The local paper, the Rutland Mercury, carried some features and letters about the extent to which they may, or may not, prey on song birds. Personally, I doubt... Continue reading

  • My Rutland Renovation: underfloor heating

    My Rutland Renovation: underfloor heating

    I’m delighted with the rustic riven slate slabs that form the last layer of the new floor in the cottage.  Having dug down to Australia (see previous Renovation post) Stuart my lovely builder has built back up almost to the previous level, with layer after layer of screed, a damp proof membrane, concrete, a plastic ‘egg box’ style layer in which to lay the underfloor heating pipes, the pipes themselves, more screed, tile adhesive and... Continue reading

  • My Rutland Renovation: buried treasure

    Beneath the quarry tiles in the living room, and under the york stone flags in the kitchen, a quantity of broken china and glass, thoughtfully put on one side for me by my lovely builder, is a window on previous occupants. The bits and pieces include the stems of several clay pipes and one broken pipe bowl…  several bits of ‘blue and white’ china with Victorian transfer printed scenes – very Willow Pattern.  There are... Continue reading

  • Renovation or Re-build?

    Renovation or Re-build?

      As many people before me have discovered, when you start messing about with an old property, the more you ‘peel back’ the more problems you find. Under the carpet and underlay upstairs, we found hardboard nailed down on top of the old floorboards. In the main bedroom, under said hardboard, the builder found an interesting patchwork of ‘new timber’ (circa 1970) laid in the opposite direction to the boards themselves. This patchwork filled a... Continue reading

  • A hint of Spring in Rutland

    A hint of Spring in Rutland

    The snowdrops are opening all over the village, from the churchyard to the wooded banks of the stream.  I hope that we will not see another cold snap.  Today has been a hint of Spring, and this morning I pruned the rosesin the garden of the house I’m renting, and employed a fairly gung-ho approach, cutting back hard. I went up to the farm this afternoon to watch the lambing.  It’s an exhausting production line... Continue reading

  • Christmas in Rutland

    A busy Christmas – where did the time go?   The village was a hive of activity, from Carol Singing with Father Christmas on his motorised sled, to decorating the Church with evergreens and candles for Midnight Mass. And the weather?  Snowy, and freezing.  My Rutland Renovation project ground to a halt as the temperature dipped to -9 degrees, making it impossible to make concrete for the new floors – and of course it was... Continue reading

  • My Rutland Renovation: digging deep

    My Rutland Renovation: digging deep

    The surveyor easily spotted that the living room in my 18th century newly-acquired Rutland cottage consisted of quarry tiles under damp carpet, the tiles undoubtedly put down on compacted rubble on top of the earth.  Authenticity is one thing, but a cold damp floor is something else, so of course I asked my lovely builder (4 weeks into the project, we’re still getting on well) to dig out the floor and put in a new... Continue reading

  • OK, so we’ve got snow in Rutland too

    OK, so we’ve got snow in Rutland too

    I have not joined the universal ‘here are my snow pictures’ posting rush.  Actually I have been too busy coping with the snow for the last week to find time to blog… In Rutland, we’ve had around five inches’ total accumulation over the last seven days: enough to be tedious and not enough to bring the County to a halt.  But of course the problem is that, while the main roads around Rutland are kept... Continue reading

  • My Rutland Renovation

    My Rutland Renovation

    I have rented a house in Rutland since moving here to work in 2006.  I was not going to stay…  well, maybe three years at most. Four years on, and I came to the conclusion that I was staying – at least for the forsee-able future.  Having settled in a pretty village with a great community spirit, and been welcomed by my neighbours with open arms, I felt that, if I were to buy in... Continue reading

  • Congratulations William and Kate

    I am sure the majority of Rutlanders will be happy for Prince William and Kate.  Rutland is very ‘middle England’ and like most rural communities, we like our traditions and have deep roots – so I’m fairly confident that the county will be happy to celebrate when the Royal Wedding takes place next year: I feel a street party coming on!