Tuesday 1 December 2020

Window Seats III

The day I wrote the previous blog entry on the two new window seats that have been constructed on the top floor of the castle, Gregor was working away on a third. It would seem somewhat unfair not to accord the same honour of introducing the third window seat to its expectant public. So here it is:

third new window seat

You can see by the time we had got around to the third window seat, we had run out of the reclaimed pitch-pine lining from Lochee Parish Church that we used to give the previous two a period patina. So all the timber here is new. Developing a period patina will just take a little longer. At the castle one always has a view towards the longer timescale.

When I photographed the window seat, I realised I should show progress in the room where the seat is located. The original Victorian plasterwork was mostly good, but patch repairs using plasterboard were required. You can see two areas in the ceiling where repairs have taken place. It's useful to record this before painting occurs, because then there will be no trace. 

The repair at the front was an actual hole in the ceiling. The area at the back flexed alarming when pushed with a broom handle. This is a sure sign the plaster has detached from its supporting woodwork and is structurally unsound. After the defective plaster was removed, I climbed up a ladder and poked my head through the hole into the loft space to inspect the condition of the ceiling  from above. 

ceiling repairs in the same room - waiting to be painted

The ceiling was mostly pretty sound, but across its entirety was a two inch thick layer of pigeon poo, which can hold moisture and create perfect conditions for dry rot. "This is good in a way, we can brush the pigeon poo through the hole in the ceiling and it will be so much easier to remove this way.", I declared trying to sound upbeat. Gregor demurred "We will be fixing the hole in the ceiling, then it will be your job to remove the pigeon poo from above.". That was me told. I have removed enough pigeon poo in confined spaces with a dish-towel strapped across my nose and mouth, to know the unpleasantness that lies ahead.

To donate to the Balintore restoration project click here.


  1. Fortunes have been made on the sale of Guano. Have you NO entrepenurial ambitions ? :-)

  2. Titter, I recently visited the Gothic splendours of Tyntesfield House, outside Bristol. This was entirely funded by guano! :-)

    Would you like to make me an offer on the bags of pigeon poo?