Our Grand Design in Montemboeuf, Charente, France

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How do like your Agilia in the morning? – Comment prenez vous votre Agilia le matin?

LaFarge truck arrives on site

LaFarge truck arrives on site

On a dark early morning in late November, two big white whirring trucks turned up on our site.  Finally the time had arrived to lay our concrete slab!  This was such an exciting moment in the build process and neither of us can wait to see it.  Our builders have done a fantastic job throughout the build and have always kept us informed with photos and now a video!  The finish is so smooth it looks like water.  It is probably a good job i’m not there because wet concrete is s bit like ‘a moth to a flame’ and i’d be very tempted to write my name.  I don’t think Tom or our future guests would be too impressed because it is likely that (all be it with a resin on top) that this will be out floor finish.

Below is a video that Stuart our builder took of the concrete being poured.

To the right of the video you will have seen a big hole in the ground.  Don’t worry, we haven’t missed a bit, this is where our pergola/terrace structure will sit, and where will will eat cheese, drink wine and look at the view!  Seeing the guys smoothing out the slab, you can see how amazing this Agilia is.

Our foundations are now complete a great achievement with no problems, we are now ready for our timber frame.  We also managed to avoid the classic Grand Designs mishap of spending all our money just to get out of the ground.  Now where’s that bathroom and kitchen catalogue…..



As promised, concrete! – Comme promis, le béton!

Lafarge truck

Lafarge truck delivering concrete!

In my last post, I hoped to show you something a little more ‘concrete’ when I next wrote. That time has now arrived!  A big Lafarge truck turned up on our site today to deliver and lay a lot of concrete for our foundations.  I know concrete isn’t the most environmentally friendly of products, but it was our best option and meant we didn’t spend a fortune ‘getting out of the ground’.  We will also be having a concrete slab, which is great for thermal mass, something which will be very important during those Charente summers.

Anyway, this is the start of the foundations and is a very exciting moment in the build.  It really feels as though it has started now and that we have officially ‘broken ground’.

For me, it also gives an idea of the scale of the build for the first time.  You always see people in Grand Designs standing in the frame of their house gawping at the size and scale of what they are building and now I am one of those people.  I am sure that this will only be confounded once our frame goes up.  What we are building isn’t huge, but it is good to get an idea. If you’re lucky, I will post more pictures of concrete tomorrow….