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  1. You could rent the land out to another local farmer while you wait. It happens all the time around here. Farmers rent land to grow potatoes (water source needed nearby) asparagus growing or pig production, anything really. The advantage is that you need to do nothing except collect the rent. Not sure about the farmer selling your land but around here they like farmland to stay as farmland and if offers are similar (or even if they are not) they will sell to the buyer who is going to farm it.
  2. I assume they are ex VAT. That's how most merchants quote. I will check and then take a look elsewhere if we decide to go with them. Just need to know if they are any good or not?
  3. Did you decide on Ytong blocks @romario. Jewsons are offering them to us at £11 per sq m as all others are out of stock.
  4. Just found this thread and Liz you are frightening me! How did it get so out of hand? We are building a bungalow of similar proportions to yours and doing much of it ourselves using subcontractors.
  5. If anyone wants to ask questions about linseed paint, and it comes in lots of colours, there is an active facebook page. I like the idea that it is natural and chemical free. Would just like some feedback from users. There is a comment on Facebook about it being used on Chatsworth House.
  6. It is, apparently, still used widely in Scandinavian countries.
  7. Have been reading about Linseed paint as a natural alternative to oil based paints from the petrochemical industry. It all sounds very good. Most importantly it seems to need very little maintenance. To protect from uv light you need to use a colour version of the paint rather than the clear oil version though you can just add a little white to the clear if you so desire. As we are looking at oak windows we need the uv protection to prevent them going silver. However, it seems a shame to cover up oak with paint! Any experience out there? Ideally we would like very low maintenance without resorting to UPVC windows and we are not sure about aluminium cladding.
  8. We have had a quote from Stroma for "Design Stage" SAP and PEA of £380 +vat. "As Built" SAP and EPC is quoted as £219 +vat Can anyone explain what these are and whether we need both or not??? Do the quotes seem reasonable? Stroma was recommended by our Building Control surveyor as producing "easy to work with" assessments.
  9. Soil is clay over gravel @Temp. Trees are nowhere near any foundations. We are at the edge of a village. The tree we needed to remove was slap bang where we wanted to put the driveway gate as it leaves the farm track and enters our site. The Weeping Willow was at the boundary between the existing house and new site. Plenty of distance from the existing house or we would not have planted it in the first place. It was, however, too close for comfort to the driveway of the new build. Sad as it was beautiful but we have room to plant another in our new garden should we want to. The next thing that cropped up is one of the ditches along the edge of the farm track is blocked where it meets the road. It is our neighbour's ditch on the Southern boundary of the farm track we both share, but he was taking the opportunity to pipe it while we were doing ours. A report to Highways brought the response that they would either not attend at all (no risk to life) because the adjoining landowner should deal with it or if they would attend (it is their culvert) then it might be about six weeks. Neighbour called a jetting team out and it took nearly all day to clear it. Why it was piped at all is a mystery! It is beside a copse of trees and the roots just cause blockages. Our ditches now bypass this ditch, since we were plagued with flooding issues, and enter a culvert under the road to flow down the other side of the road.
  10. Thanks all. Our farmer neighbour arrived yesterday with his handy digger and his 7 ton jcb to help us pipe the ditches either side of the proposed driveway. Unfortunately his bucket clipped a tree or two and they fell over It was a field maple so almost a weed. It was, we estimate, about 60 feet high! There are a couple more that might as well come down as they will be on the Southern boundary and, so, apart from being a worry in high winds, will cast a lot of shade and deposit a lot of leaves in the Autumn. None of this will probably show up on an aerial survey as it is all adjacent to a dense copse of trees on the other side of the lane. While all this was going on a local developer called by to chat and noticed that in our garden, that we are leaving, is a Weeping Willow. It is planted next to a natural pond on the new boundary between the old house and our new plot. He recommended that we remove it ASAP. He told us he failed to do this on an early development and was made to put in 3 metre foundations because of it. We were aware of problems with Willows but thought that we were far enough away. We decided to measure anyway. Good job we did as the root spread bridges the boundary between the two properties. Such a shame because it is beautiful and a real feature of our existing garden but we cannot risk it. Pretty tired last night and more to do today.
  11. I must admit that this is the route we are leaning towards. It says on the planning site that they have used an aerial view to determine that there are trees there. The trees in question would, I think, be hard to make out from the adjacent copse. They are big trees but we have a cherry picker and a chainsaw. We did think that the felling would look "new" but how new is new? We could, also, ask our friendly farmer to have a go with his JCB at pulling out the stump. The trees border on to a ditch which we are piping to widen the track to save labour in keep having to clear it.
  12. We are building in our back garden. There is a track beside our house that leads from the road to the plot. The original planning application was speculative and did not use this track but involved using the existing driveway. The planners suggested moving the site from beside the house to behind it. The architect just extended our driveway so that it would be a "shared" driveway. We have now applied to use the track leading straight of the road to the plot. It has involved a new application but is a much much better design as the existing house keeps its driveway and the new house gets its own separate one. This track is a shared one with our neighbour but he rarely uses it to access the fields behind our house. I have just seen, on the application, that the tree officer has done an aerial survey and noted mature trees on the Southern Boundary. They have requested a tree survey. The track in question goes between our farmer neighbour's copse of trees, containing mature oak trees and other natives, and our existing hedge and tree boundary. There are two mature trees (field maple I believe) right where we want to put the new access to the plot. They are on our boundary and belong to us. Does anyone know if felling these trees (why oh why did we not forsee this?! We could have felled them months ago!) to allow the driveway access into the plot will cause us a problem? I have heard that some trees, such as oaks, do have to be saved. On a nearby application the tree survey just identified one tree worth "saving". In the back of my mind I think that some trees are considered almost as weeds. Am I right? If we offer to plant trees elsewhere on site will it help?
  13. There is something called the "Riparian" ownership of land next to a watercourse and this includes ditches. We, the landowner are the riparian owners of it which means that Highways can control what happens to it but we can maintain it!
  14. I had a similar quote from Build Store and went back in to the quotes and tried to eliminate items not needed but could not achieve anything better. On talking to a representative it seems my pessimistic forecast of a two year time scale for the project (what do I know?) was causing problems with the public liability side of the quotes. I could not drop the cover for plant that I did not need either. I gave Protek a call as their website was not helpful (£1.86 for 12 month site insurance!) unlike their representative who retrieved the quote and sorted it all out with a quote of £436 for 12 months or £544 for a 15 month policy. Am I being pessimistic on the build timetable for a 189 sq m bungalow? I live with a very laid back husband who does not move as quickly as I think he should and I am sure that we will be constantly playing catch up due to this trait. I envisage scenarios like "ok I have finished that - can you order the materials now for the next stage" type conversations