Saturday, 8 December 2012

Water, water everywhere

“Water, water, every where,
And all the boards did shrink;
Water, water, every where,
Nor any drop to drink.”

On my word blog the other day, McGregor reminded me that the words ‘eftsoons’ appeared in the Ancient Mariner.  Today I was reminded again of that poem when Phil came to provide us with a new external and internal stopcock for the water.

I was anticipating that he would have to dig a great big hole.  In fact, the first hole he dug was not as large as I had thought.  But when you start messing with The House That Jack Built nothing ever goes easily.  The water main was directly alongside the drain and immediately below a gas pipe.  Whether the gas pipe was still ‘live’ or not we didn’t know but obviously it had to be treated as such.  

Getting himself soaked in the process Phil managed to cut into the main and provide a new outside stopcock and inside stopcock.  All seemed complete until we discovered the downstairs cloakroom had no water any more.  Believe it or not the main comes into the house in two places. 
It was dig another hole time.  Then the poor man had to off to Birkenhead for more fittings and eventually link up the downstairs loo and wash-basin to the mains again. 

For all that extra work the only thing he wanted to charge us for was the fittings.  We gave him more than that but it says all one could want to know about Phil the Plumber.  If anyone on The Wirral ever needs a plumber we cannot recommend him more highly and would be happy to provide his details.

The first hole – the mains water pipe is below that gas pipe…

 About to cut into the mains water pipe – I am safely behind the conservatory window!

Hammering the bricks back in place (for the first time!)

Up come some of the bricks again, a second hole is dug and the mains is continued from the new stopcock, under the drain and on to the downstairs cloakroom.

Somewhat later than advertised, the job is done – most satisfactorily.


  1. Oh messy nasty work! Good thing Ivy didn't get into all that mud and dirt.

  2. Glad you had Phil the Plumber do the job, and do it right! One can have such bad luck with the people doing such jobs around the house - or good luck, as in your case.

  3. Weight, worth and gold come to mind.

    1. He sure is GB. This is our seventh plumber in this house - eighth if you count the one Jo wouldn't have emplyed for all the tea in China because of the his manner. Some refused to take on the jobs. One of the previous ones seemed reasonable but left us with two leaks. Two left us with a shower not working properly. Another (the gas plumber) has been OK but charged a bomb. This one is undoubtedly worth his weight in gold.

  4. One of the things that never ceased to amaze us back in the days when I was travelling in Britain (i.e. the late 70s) was British plumbing. It seems to still have some mysteries attached ;)

    1. That's because it's still the same plumbing, Monica - lead pipes and all!

  5. We have a gem too - his name is Bob the Plumber. Infact, we have just lent him to Graham so that he could fix his boiler - AGAIN!


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