House secrets

The next phase in our house renovation project is to refurbish the master bedroom, which we plan to do in the new year.

To inform both the costs and some of the design decisions, I was curious about what the state of the fireplace and hearth would be behind the gas burner and raised marble hearth stone that the previous owners installed in the 1990’s.    I wanted to know whether I’d need to factor in replacing the hearthstone like we did in the living room and grand hall, and whether I’d likely end up with and exposed brick fireplace nook like in our grand hall and living room, or would choose to find a salvaged cast iron fireplace surround to match the one in our guest room which is painted white.

Having taken a bit of a DIY break for the summer, my curiosity got the better of me and on a whim we decided to spontaneously remove the gas fireplace this weekend (don’t worry – it had already been professionally disconnected previously by a CORGI certified gas guy!)

As we chipped, wedged and prised off the layers, we made a very exciting and quite unexpected discovery – behind the gas fireplace and new panelling was the original fireplace from 1896!  Having now refurbished more than half the rooms in our house, we weren’t expecting to uncover any more house secrets,  so it was quite a fun surprise. The original concrete hearth is in good condition so won’t need to be replaced (just scrubbed clean), and I really love the circular pattern on the fireplace detailing.

Once the gas fireplace and brown marble hearth were removed we were amazed by how much more spacious the room felt… Now to get rid of that orange paint.


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