S.O.S – Save Our Shed!

This morning, my husband and I ambled down to the allotment, to check on the shed. I have had to work lots of extra hours this week and that combined with the bad weather had left me dreading what we would find.

Upon our arrival, we found Michael and Cliff attempting to cover the shed roof with a tarpaulin. It turns out the last few days of high wind and rain have shredded the remaining felt as well as the fix I tried to do a few days ago. The exposed roof was wet and inside there was some evidence of water leaking down the back wall.

It was so bad that we knew we had to do some serious work on it today otherwise we might loose the shed. Quickly, we emptied the shed. We removed the damp carpet tiles, moved out the furniture and generally cleared anything damp out. The floor had damp patches but the walls and most of the roof were dry.

We had a quick chat with Cliff and we decided we must do an emergency dash to B&Q to buy a roll of shed felt. Both of us decided on a thick, quality shed felt that apparently has a 5 year guarantee. I also picked up a couple of extra packs of tacks as I had no idea how many we would need.

Cliff had been extremely busy while we had been away. He had started to remove all the old, shredded felt and, using a handy gadget, had been removing the old tacks. Whilst my husband fed the chickens who were unimpressed with being forgotten, I helped Cliff remove the remaining old tacks and prepare the roof for its new felt. As we were working, Will came to help too.

Once all the old tacks were removed and the rotten wood burnt, we were ready to start. The old felt including the patched felt from a few days ago filled a wheelbarrow, ready to go to the dump tomorrow.

Cliff went off to find some spare wood to use to replace and cover the worst of the rotted wood and replace the old roof batons.

Cliff and Will took either side of the shed and my husband helped Will roll the new felt across the shed to Cliff. Then the felt was straightened up and tacked into place. We started with the back of the shed and moved towards the front, layering the felt so that each layer had a good overlap to prevent leaks.

Unfortunately, the felt wasn’t wide enough to cover the roof with two strips. So after some debate, we decided to do a third strip. Overkill was better than risking leaks by only using two strips and patching the front. Will and Cliff tacked down the felt to the new batons on the side of the shed. Then we hit a snag.

The felt must be tacked across the roof otherwise the next moderate wind would rip it off. It was decided, much to my horror, that as the lightest person, I needed to go up onto the shed roof and tack down the felt. Before I had time to protest and explain my fear of heights, I was at the top of the ladder and half on the roof armed with a bag of tacks and a hammer. Luckily for me, I didn’t have to be up there too long and whilst I was up there, I screwed a roof baton into place. These batons lie perpendicular to the direction of the felt and provides added protection against wind.

We attached another two batons either side of my central one for peace of mind. Next, Cliff and Will used spare wood to cover the sides of the roof to ensure the felt was secure all the way around the roof edge. As an added bonus, the new edging smartens the outside of the shed up. And all done just before the next band of rain and wind comes in!

As the final finishing touches were being made to the roof edging, I popped into the shed and put up the last string of lights and hung up the paint brushes above the tool panel in the shed.

To top off a successful day, Will had also finished and dropped off our new handmade bench. Will has awesome wood working skills and has made several of the benches, raised beds and the sundial in the Community Garden. Known as Will’s Wooden Wonders, he uses old pallets and other odd bits of wood to create beautiful pieces. We put our new bench outside the shed as a finishing touch. Keep an eye out for more of Will’s Wooden Wonders in the next few weeks – I have a few requests for Will for our plot but I need to decide on sizes and numbers first!

So all that is left, is to paint the new edging to match the rest of the shed and give a second coat to the bench! A huge thank you to Cliff and Will for their hard work and excellent shed saving skills!

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