Raising the Roof

Armed with only a vague plan and a handful of tools, we headed off to the allotment early to tackle the roof. I’m not going to lie, it was rather a daunting prospect to get the scaffolding netting, greenhouse shield and old roof panels off and put up the new roof within a day. Especially as the days are getting significantly shorter. Our first job was to work out how the old roof panels were attached and to borrow a long ladder. I left my husband do this while I went around the coop, cutting cable ties to allow the roof netting to be removed. There were many moments where I cursed being the height of an adolescent hobbit but eventually, it was done! With the netting pulled clear and my husband carefully bringing down the greenhouse shield, we got our first look at the roof.

The roof had been made of a mix of different roof panels and attached with a mix of screws, nails and bolts. The first panel on the shed side of the coop took quite some time to get off as it had been very securely attached to the coop with screws and nails. Fortunately, I had remembered to bring our claw hammer which made relatively short work of the nails once we worked out the knack of getting them out without damaging the panel. Moving around, my main job was to pass tools and stand on the bottom of the ladder to keep it secure. I am not a fan of heights at the best of times so I was happy to say no more than a foot off the ground during the entire process!

The side of the coop facing the Community Garden had roof panels across the entire roof. This was always the driest side of the coop for the chickens however, some of the panels had shifted and had allowed water in. Between us, a little over an hour later, all the roof panels were loose and ready to be removed. One by one, my husband slid them down and we made a pile of them at the edge of the plot. By now, it was well past lunchtime so we jumped into the car and headed off to get some food.

After scoffing lunch, we quickly did the rounds of B&Q and Screwfix to collect staples and cable ties. With these essential items, we headed back to the allotment. The plan was to put one side of the new roof on and secure it. Surprisingly, this went quite well with the only difficulty being the roof panels were only just long enough on the Community Garden side. We were about halfway across one side of the roof when the weather took a turn. It was like the heavens had turned on a tap and throwing down tools, we sprinted to the shed. Fortunately, the shower blew over quite quickly and within 10 minutes we were back at work.

By the time we had got half the roof on, we were beginning to lose the light. Using torches, we carried on and put up three more panels and the first of the apex panels before conceding defeat. We cleared away the rubbish for the tip and headed off home to change before heading out to a fireworks display.

The plan for tomorrow is to complete the last 3 panels and apex pieces. Then secure anti-bird wire across the front and rear of the roof to stop any marauding sparrows from getting in. After that, all that’s left is to sort out the New Coop….

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