Tuesday, 3 March 2009

The old Roman wall

The hilltop site the house is built on has been in use for well over two thousand years - a notion that is commonplace for Italians but continues to amaze me. In the courtyard we have a section of old Roman wall - what remains of it is too high to ignore but too low to be of any practical use. It is a bit like having a length of Hadrians Wall in your back yard - romantic sounding but actually quite brutal to look at.We have spent the day with the architects seeing what can be done to make it safer - although t is only about three feet high on the courtyard side it plunges a further six or seven feet on the field side of the house . This makes it a magnet for children who love to walk along it but also has obvious disadvantages. After much discussion we have decided to put in planning permission to at least stabilize the masonry and re point the stonework - any hope of building it up using the original materials to a more sensible height would require a host of permissions and the bureaucracy would delay the project for at least a year.

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