May 2021 – Under Pressure

We knew it was going to be bad weather all week. Rick, Will’s dad, had confirmed our fate on the Sunday evening phone call home. ‘Constant rain down your way’

Even though Will announced he’d found a huge unopened pot of white masonry paint in the magic shed, we still needed to go shopping for as he calls it, ‘serious bits of kit’ before tackling the exterior mission clean-up.

Colenso’s the local hardware store, is usually our first port of call. 

It is a fabulous Aladdin’s cave of treasures. Colin the owner is charming and attentive with the most incredible memory for numbers and faces. An old-fashioned salesman with top-of-the-range stuff and most of the time everything you could possibly ask for


I’d started on the courtyard earlier in the week, but by day 3, it was definitely against all odds….my trustee jet washer started making disconcerting grumbling noises from the off and clouds started delivering light rain that pretty quickly turned to spectacular rain, which I don’t think helped.

The bright lights of Penzance called us offering all sorts of pleasures, Tool Station, Screwfix, Dunelm Mill, it has the lot! 

12 hours previous we’d committed to trying harder on our Summer well-being plan, but once through the Supermarket doors, we overspent on colourful bags of baked goods and a token pot of cottage cheese.

Actually, the weather was bad but not all week. Brilliant sunshine followed a wet 48 hours. The outside walls got a good couple of coats of the donated white masonry paint, I persevered with the old pressure washer, and once I got through the layers of dirt, algae, and lichen to clean block paving, realised that Sandra must have mapped out a red geometric pattern in paint, now a faded pink.

The battered old wood cladding got smartened up with some of our newly chosen colours. It just has to hold strong for another year or until renovation phase 2 starts.

And those hot buttered teacakes turned out to be a real blessing.


Colin of Colenso’s the local hardware store 

Before and after a coat of painr

Repotted a slighly sad weeping willow leaved pear tree we found in the corner of the courtyard

The halfway point in the pressure washing and you can still just see the faded geometric pattern on the clean block paving

Relaxing watching the sunset over Porthmeor Beach, St Ives


You can read the next update here – June 2021 – The Guest Room & Rose Hilton 

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Anne Pitcher

    Well done people! Having just cleared 6 large garden bags of ivy from the garden I empathise. Anyway, it looks beautiful.

    1. Will Kemp

      Great going on the garden Anne! Thank you so much; onward and forward!

  2. susanbrennan

    A labor of love for sure, but the renovations look great! I wasn’t familiar with Sandra Blow’s work—it’s really wonderful. It must feel so special to be working in her former space. Thanks for sharing. Congratulations and wishing you all the best in your newly renovated home and studio!

    1. Will Kemp

      Thanks for your kind wishes Susan, yes it feels like a real privilege to be able to work in the same space. Glad you enjoyed the progress pictures.

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