Messy mayhem

Big steps

Remember the cleared-out interior space? Expect some mayhem. Time to start removing the plasterboard in the main hall area of the Small Mission Hall.

I managed to get my poor old ladder that I stupidly managed to run over on the journey up working again. However, the electrician was happy to leave his much bigger ladder with me if it was of any use.

mission hall interior is finally clear-ish
mission hall interior is finally clear-ish

It certainly would be. I got my first glimpse into the roof space, whilst getting a few more key dimensions too – a result in itself. Equally important though was that it allowed me to reach much higher areas to start stripping the old plasterboard off.

I had a big job ahead of me here…
I had a big job ahead of me here…

I had initially hoped to remove the plasterboard and wooden studwork from the hall area’s lower walls. With this larger ladder, I was able to reach a bit further up and get more done than I had first imagined.

Higher Things

Having the temporary loan of a bigger ladder made it possible to reach the lower and upper wall areas. I also managed to work a way of being able to start getting some of the ceiling plasterboard off as well.

under the ceiling plasterboard I found this
under the ceiling plasterboard, I found this

This was a real bonus. I was not expecting to be able to do this. Another surprise awaited me underneath as well. The ceiling had the original timber panelling underneath (known locally as V lining I believe?).

removing all the old plasterboard was going to be a big old job
removing all the old plasterboard was going to be a big old job

For the time being, this will stay. If I do go for a mezzanine floor level though, this will need to come down as well. In the meantime, it might help (a little) in keeping any heat in the building. Yes I know, I am clutching at straws on this one!

Mission creep

However, it soon became clear that this was turning out to be a much bigger job than I had first imagined. Especially with the extra plasterboard from the ceiling coming down as well.

Hidden ceiling vent holes under the plasterboard
Hidden ceiling vent holes under the plasterboard

I was rapidly running out of room in an already tiny space. A space barely big enough already for my small tent to sleep in, let alone live and work!

Divide and conquer

I concocted what in my head seemed like a bit of a cunning plan. I decided to divide and conquer to get the work done.

Splitting the space into rough quarters would allow me to strip everything off the walls/ceiling one-quarter of the room at a time.

disposal of the old plasterboard to the dump
disposal of the old plasterboard to the dump

Then get all the plasterboard cleared up and bagged for removal to the dump in Stornoway. My yellow Tonka truck of a T4 camper made a great workhorse in getting all the old plasterboard to the dump to be weighed in.

slowly removing all the old plasterboard
slowly removing all the old plasterboard

Once one-quarter of the room was done, with the waste removed, I could move my tent into the cleared space and repeat the process for the next quarter of the room. A cunning plan indeed.

New look

With no limits on work hours, and with no neighbours in earshot, I could have loud music on, sing and dance around like a loon late into the night, as slowly but surely, the blue plasterboard all got pulled down.

finally, all the plasterboards down
finally, all the plasterboards down

It revealed another classic top ten colour of institutional interior design colours – Primrose yellow. At least it was a good feeling to see all of the old plasterboard removed. The building finally got to breathe internally again.

trapped condensation behind the plasterboard
trapped condensation behind the plasterboard

It was strange for a few days as you could see the moisture trapped in the walls escaping to the surface. Better out than in!

Once all the old plasterboard was gone, there was the next issue. What to do with all the old timber that was taking over the room!

welcome to my small world
Welcome to my small world

Reusing and repurposing stuff was one of my ambitions for the project. Just that there was a whole lot of stuff to decide what to do with now!

Long process

It was a long and laborious process working on my own. I ended up removing well over a ton of plasterboard in the end!

more done than I had hoped for – job done
more done than I had hoped for – job done

It was one way of keeping warm I suppose. When you were not physically working, it just became way too cold to sit and try to relax. I had to jump in my sleeping bag and take refuge in the tent for an early night and a bit of warmth.

Heading home

I was pretty shattered, so a good time to make my way back down south again! I had a big graphic design project that I had to get on with. It would feel like a bit of a holiday compared to this.

the long road trip back home
the long road trip back home

At least a bit more progress has been made… onwards and upwards!

So what do you think?

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