Wednesday, 29 December 2010

An English Winter 2010

Brewood Hall in the snow. Tai is rolling in the snow just outside the garden wall

It's still December as I write this but we're having one of the hardest winters I can remember.

In early November it became cold and windy with very hard frost and then we had snow. It snowed a number of times, although we only had about 3 or 4 inches in Brewood. The snow was still on the ground on Christmas Day but this morning, it's virtually all gone. Today it's wet, foggy and very overcast. At least it's warmer.

As usual, our transport services crumbled on the arrival of adverse weather. Road, rail and air were very adversely affected. But most British architecture performs badly in cold weather. Apart from thermal losses through windows, walls and roofs which modern Building Regulations seek to minimise through increasing restrictions, we have the curious tradition of putting a lot of our plumbing on the outside of buildings.

Since Brewood Hall is a Grade 2 Listed Building, it's difficult to make performance improvements so we experienced intermittent loss of water supply and a couple of leaks (so far). The building has partial central heating which is very expensive to run so most of the time the problem is trying to keep warm indoors.

My dog, Tai, is completely unfazed by these weather conditions and still loves to go out for long walks, delighting in rolling in the snow when he finds an attractive spot.