Aside from the towering trees, one further issue featured strongly in the surveyor’s report. And sadly it can be put off no longer.
I’ve mentioned before the ‘hole in the ground’ but I’ll skip over the detailed description of the drainage arrangement that we have inherited. Suffice to say there is a large cavity underneath the lawn, topped with concrete and an inspection hatch. The hatch doesn’t fit properly… it is the stuff of the worst possible nightmares and, believe me, I know.
Unsurprisingly, it’s not a subject I’d heard a lot about. A Home Renovation Show is coming up, so what better way to find out more. I’m not allowed to linger (this time..) at the glitzy displays of kitchen appliances, remote controlled lighting systems and floor to ceiling glazing. We head to the very back of the hall where at least it is quieter and one is spared the attentions, every few seconds, of a glamorous lady in an Armani suit.
For this is a completely different world. Off mains drainage must surely be a niche market but there is nevertheless a bewildering choice. There seem to be two common factors:
..an extremely large green plastic underground tank
..and price. The £5K that we had budgeted to cover it… undoubtedly won’t.
Choosing the right product, and purchasing it, is just the beginning. The work needed to install the damn thing is immense. Just where, on a hillside, is it going to go? And just how to get the JCB down here in the first place? Then there’s the building regulations to think about. Not to mention the beguilingly titled ‘Schedule of Exempt Operations’.. We come away with many more questions than we started with and an awful lot of paperwork.
I had many wistful and dreamy thoughts about country life during the three (long and frustrating) years that we spent house hunting. It’s fair to say that sitting up in bed researching sewage systems was not one of those.
I will keep you informed.