Blue Flower

Last Friday the wagon floor was planed and finished, then on Saturday Fred, Debra and family fitted out the inside of the wagon with bench seating with lifting seat panels and storage underneath, and a kitchen unit by the window which all looks really good. The end panels have been painted white making it much brighter inside.

On Thursday there were six volunteers, Graham and Eddie went to the bone mill to secure frost covers which had blown loose. We also covered the mill stones with sheeting, then walked round and checked the site. Snowdrops were out in several places, and we saw a Buzzard overhead. We oiled the water wheel bearings and checked the wheel was still chocked. The green temporary fencing was taken down as this was on loan and has to be returned, we are going to buy suitable fencing ready for the open days later this year. Tunnel entrances were taped off for safety.

Meanwhile back at the Maltings the team were varnishing the walls and fittings inside the wagon. They also painted the metal seat panels metallic green, these are for the bench seat for use outside at the mill made from old machinery parts and water wheel paddles. The gear wheels for the table were also painted metallic green. Dennis and John made and painted various metal parts.

This was another sunny day and we had lunch outside, John brought sausage and cranberry rolls for us all, which we enjoyed.  We discussed the skull test results and our disappointment that isotope analysis was not carried out, as this would have given much more useful information. Graham will look into this and report at the next HLF meeting.

After lunch Eddie straightened the bent fence posts and varnished inside the wagon while Dennis and John made a floor support by cutting a metal plate and welding a car jack to it, this will go under the wagon to support the centre of the floor. Graham painted the exposed plywood under the eaves, then helped Debra paint the window frame and lower panel.

Eddie, Adam and Debra fitted window handles while Dennis and John made and fitted the bolt locking plate on the entrance doors, which involved several adjustments with the grinder. We also needed some longer coach bolts for the lock plates which Abbie brought to us, Dennis ground the squares off them to fit holes in the lock plates. The door lock on the other side was worked on by all of us and was completed quickly so the wagon is now secure, with a padlock on each side. Finally the new lock parts were painted with Bauxite, the original livery of the wagon.

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