Bridge Cottage, Uckfield, has emerged from the hoardings which have surrounded the building work.
Work is continuing on the £1 million project, which has benefited from Heritage Lottery funding.
The aim of the work is to reconfigure the building so it looks much like it did in the 1600s but with “discreet modern upgrades”.
Uckfield Preservation Society – which secured more than £1 million towards the work from the Heritage Lottery Fund – plans to use Bridge Cottage for a range of heritage and local history activities. The building is also to be registered for Civil Ceremonies allowing weddings to take place there.
Bridge Cottage works update
In its last update, the preservation society reported:
At last the tin roof has gone and the scaffolding has come down to gutter level.
It certainly has been up there a long time and become a talking point with its height.
Before it finally came down we did have to carry out some work on the two chimneys to both make them safe and to ensure that the local birds don’t fall down the chimneys in future.
Birds falling down, our very wide chimneys have, in the past made a terrible mess; something we are keen to avoid in the refurbished building.
The roofing tilers have now started their work and, of course it’s started to rain for them.
October also saw the connection of the four bore holes into a manifold chamber .where the feeds will be balanced before going into the Cottage.
Electricity supply problem
These connections had to happen at a depth of over a metre, so more digging. The archaeologist was on site looking down the hole but, unlike the digging inside the building, nothing was found.
Unfortunately our new, three phase electricity supply has not yet reached the building.
In spite of two days of digging across the road during the half-term holidays, they failed to get the cable through as they came across a massive block of concrete in the road just outside of the building.
As this wasn’t on anybody’s plan of services they had to stop work in case it contained a gas or water main pipe.
They still haven’t discovered what it is but they now have a plan to get around the problem, probably by trying to dig underneath it with a larger trenching machine.
Inevitably this will require some weekend working but our contractor is working with all parties to try to minimise the impact of this work on passing traffic. We can only apologies in advance if traffic is delayed whilst the work is being carried out.
Finishing the roof work
Inside the building work has continued on wattle and daub repairs, door frame fixing along with other woodwork tasks.
The electrician continues to make sense of his spaghetti of installed cables by terminating them into the appropriate outlets whilst the plumber fits pipes and lagging to keep in the heat.
Big targets for November – finish tiling the roof and drop the scaffolding.