Quadrangle Timeline

Before we moved to Morwell we identified this area as the first that we’d work to improve. It didn’t happen like that. Not immediately obvious were two things - this north-facing lounge wall never sees sunlight during the day, and the eternally damp grass around there was the recipient of two tons of water a day from a major leak on the house mains inlet pipe.
The water leak was repaired (twice) and a proper soakaway was installed in October 2016 for the roof water. To gain access for a digger some of the wall had to be demolished which gave us the idea of putting new steps from the quadrangle up into the garden. As a temporary measure a stairway of concrete blocks was put in place in April 2017 and a short concrete path laid to bridge the gap to the grass. Neither pretty nor particularly practical, but temporary became four years of use.
The right conditions and care and the patio could look very inviting as here in July 2017, but the grass never grew evenly in the strange black soil, and the white edging gravel laid on black plastic membrane became infested with weeds in no time, which seemed to negate the point of the membrane.
The patio stayed in that state until 2019 when the digger was back to lay foundations for a conservatory build to house a new workshop accessible from the house. 4th July the footings have been started and shows the relatively high level of the outfall drain pipe. The two access drain covers limited the width available for the workshop.
17th August and work on the outside is finished. Inside I laid underfloor heating and tiles which has made it a very comfortable place to work in especially in winter. Light is generally good too, the only minor downside is the noise of rain falling on the polycarbonate roof, deafening at times, but alternative roofing would have cut light levels too much. And of course it rains a lot at Morwell.
17th May 2022 and a digger in the quadrangle yet again. This time it is to clear the ground in preparation for laying stone flags to make a solid low-maintenance patio that we can enjoy using without traipsing mud and grit into the house. Also it will stop the voles from setting up home in the ground next to the workshop footings.
Clearance and laying the compacted base material took only one day, this is 18th May. To access the quadrangle our contractors dug a nice even slope down from the garden which seemed ideal for the replacement steps we had planned. It all looked so easy…
7th June and the slabs are all laid. The citrus trees are also in place, and we are enjoying a much better space in the summer evenings. The concrete plinth on the right has been left in place the plan being to put the first part of the garden railway here on supports for easy access.
The railway got this far by 15th October, then rain set in and the supporting woodwork started to suffer without protection so all was dismantled again. The projected four steps eventually became six steps and the construction was almost complete by 14th November although much delayed by wet weather again. Next jobs are completion of the steps and facing the ugly block wall.