The Highfield Cottage Story              


Restoration Phase 3 2010 +

Distracted by other BPHT projects, Highfield was receiving just basic maintenance and the odd "cob day" by Jane and Graham. We were also well aware that the building needed some form of formal protection. Water was leaking into the kitchen and bathroom areas and it was also obvious that the woodwork needed attention. It could not stay unpainted forever with out deterioration. Funding was an issue!

Under the auspices of the The Burkes Pass Heritage Trust, Jane applied for a grant and also to Resene Paints for assistance. The initial thought was to replace the whole roof and to paint any woodwork. A budget or $10,000 was applied for. The Lion Foundation granted $5000. That was great, but not enough to do what we intended so after consulting a few key people a plan within the budget to further protect it and make the outside look attractive was formulated with all the work to be done by voluntary labour. The key tasks included:

  • Paint and repair the windows and doors. Re-glaze the old dairy window and reinstall.
  • Paint the wooden add-on
  • Put drainage along the back and side walls to take ground and roof water away from the house. Water had been running under the house.
  • Add spouting to the back roof sections.
  • Replace the worst part of the main roof iron - basically from the main chimney to the east end where at present there is iron on iron!
  • Replace the iron on the lean-to (kitchen, bathroom and back porch area) where it has been leaking.
  • Repair the back walls where there is rot damage - new plates and rebuild in the kitchen area. The present ugly porch area to be lowered to the lean-to height.
  • Replace the lean-to roof with new or good second hand iron.
  • The remaining roof to be checked and all the roof painted.

That lot could take a year or two! There needs to be a bit of cob work done too!

Progress so far:

  • Graham has repaired the windows and trim around the front door.
  • Graham and Jane have water blasted and scraped the woodwork in preparation for painting.
  • Jane has painted the windows - and they are looking good.
  • Jane ,Graham, Shona Bell and Calum McLeod spent an afternoon on cob repair especially around the areas under windows.
  • Graham has "explored" the drainage system or lack of it with a drain cleaner - As a result it was decided that new drains are needed.
  • The iron has been removed from the back wall to evaluate repairs needed.

Workday 7 April 2010 was a bit of a washout with cold and rain. However, Shona Bell (from Timaru) and father Calum McLeod (Oamaru) arrived ready for work! It was amazing to have them along because they are connected with the cottage - Calum's great grandfather and great grandmother (Donald and Helen Bain) were the first occupiers in the 1870's. The rain eased by the after noon and we had a productive afternoon working with clay.

Slide Show  - 2010 Restoration work
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Assessment Photos



Back wall of Lean-to


Back Porch


Windows and Doors


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