Friday, 21 January 2011

Introducing the Kitchen and Slaughter Room

Location of kitchen (and slaughter room).
Yes, you read that right. At the back of the house on the first floor are two rooms linked by a door. The current kitchen (left) has a door out to the back of the house, as ground level is at floor level back here. There's one small window as well as the door, so it's a bit dark, compounded by being north-facing. The eastern wall has been dry-lined, while to the West, the wall paper has been removed from the opposite wall, exposing reddish plaster and the patchy remains of old paint. The same chimney that is in the living room can be accessed here, and until recently there was a range connected to it. There are no interesting features here really, unless you count the beam running across it, and possibly the floral wallpaper that was behind the former kitchen units.
Original kitchen, looking north, January 2011

The adjacent room was more recently used as a pantry and wash room, but was formerly used as a slaughter room. There's a pig sty at the back of the house, so there was a ready supply of victims (The Silence of the Pigs has already been mentioned). A wood-fired boiler/pot is still there, which was used for rendering meat and making sausages, or so we were told. I kept it as I thought it might be useful for brewing, but probably not. The floor is tiled, and we were told that underneath are the original red sandstone flagstones, with a hole that drops into cellar 3. The daughter of the previous owner said that as a child, they used to clean potatoes in the room and drop them down for storage in the cellar. A second chimney is present here, to which the boiler is currently connected. There are no windows in this room, as an extension was built on the north wall to house the current bathroom, a fine example of 1960/70's decor. More of that anon.

Former slaughter room, from NE corner, January 2011
The plan here is to open up the wall between the two rooms to create one large kitchen (in former slaughter room) with a dining area (in current kitchen area). The wall between the rooms is most likely solid, as opposed to being half-timbered like most of the internal walls on this level. The vaulted cellars are directly below, bearing the weight of stone construction. This will have to be checked with a structural engineer to be sure we can remove most of the wall. At the very least, some posts will have to remain, as the beam running across the rooms is load-bearing.

Door to current bathroom/extension
We'll be applying to demolish the extension  to restore the original footprint of the building, and put a new door and window in it's place as the main exit to the garden (there was probably a door here in the past). This should brighten up the place, and make a living connection to the garden, where a terrace/patio is planned, but probably not this year.


  1. I was wondering if the bathroom was original. I take it there was an outhouse before that? Is that another quaint original feature you'll restore or are you going to put in a new bathroom somewhere else?

  2. Ah, forgot about the outhouse. It's still there. I'll introduce that later.

    To answer part of your question, we plan on relocating the bathroom to the level above. Much depends on the results of the planning application though.