From building to demolishing

Building things is fun, but sometimes it’s nice to have a little light relief with a sledgehammer. Saturday was one of those occasions; there is was a ‘decorative’ wall in the corner of our lounge. It should have died about thirty years ago and I’ve hated it ever since we moved in a year ago.

First job was to remove the sockets and cable running up the side, which was a nice surprise in itself:

Looks like whoever installed it believed that mastick and wallpaper is a suitable covering to stop drill bits. Hmm.

Next we could take out the wall itself. In this case the wooden top was sealed down with more mastick and supported by piles of bricks, then the wall had been secured with concrete and not proper mortar. Fortunately a good sledgehammering soon took care of that:

Those bricks truly were hideous, and they are all around the dodgy gas fire and another similar ‘feature’ in the opposite corner of the room.

Incidentally, the newly-revealed carpet in the void should also have died in the seventies (it went straight into the skip), but at least now we have some understanding of the mysterious wallpaper we found under the stairs.

Finally we had enough room to work with surface trunking (a temporary housing until the gas pipe is removed and we can bury the cables properly):

And the final result, with the sockets moved to a more sensible level and the cable properly protected, new LightwaveRF sockets in the corner and a shiny new aerial point ready for  cabinets to go into the gap:

13/08: A couple of people pointed out that in the first photo, the offending cable is in a protected zone. This is true, but it wiggles half way round the room from the CU in a similar fashion first – sometimes in trunking, sometimes clipped to the fireplace, and sometimes masticked and papered flush with the plaster surface.


  1. Elessar says:

    Neat work. You say this wall was just eating space for decorative purpose? There is at least one architect that deserved some slaps…

    1. Jon says:

      Well, there was a large slab of wood on top to make a sideboard, but it had zero storage capacity. I didn’t take a photo of it before I took it out, since at that stage I was just having a look inside (I got a bit carried away).

  2. Nick says:

    For what it’s worth, there’s nothing in the wiring regs about protecting cables in that kind of situation – there are defined “safe zones” in a line above and below a socket which people are expected not to try and put a drill through.

  3. Matthew W.S. Bell says:

    That wiring is in an electrical safe zone, and, as such, does not require capping. I believe it might be required to be further from the surface, however.

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