With the planning stage complete it was time to get cracking and get our hands dirty. With the big thumbs up from our structural engineer and local building control there was no holding us back.
The reason we could remove the chimney, without having to re-enforce the structure of the house, is because were planning on removing the entire chimney, from top the bottom. This was not something we entered into lightly, we did lots of research and had lots of advice.
The first task was to remove the chimney stack from the roof, bring the stack below roof level and then patch the roof back up. Whilst me and David planned on doing most of the work ourselves, I don’t think my nerves could handle this particular job. This was a job for the professionals. In one day our roofer removed the chimney stack, patched up the roof and the top of chimney was now in the loft ready for us to bring down, brick by brick.
The bit in the loft was probably the hardest, David had to lie flat in order to get close enough and trying to hit out bricks when you are lying down is not easy. My job was to collect the bricks, bag them up and then put them in the skip on the driveway. That night we both ached, a lot.
It wasn’t long before we broke through to the first floor and could start bringing down the chimney breast in the upstairs kitchen. We had already taken all the plaster of the wall so it was just a case of knocking out bricks, one at a time.
It was hard work and it was dirty work and I will probably look back at this in years to come and think I can’t believe we did that. But we did. Just the two of us. And we were still friends at the end of it.