Towards the end of November we found ourselves without heating as the old boiler gave up. (Thank goodness for the immersion heater). This corresponded with the first cold snap of the year, and we found ourselves waking up to minus 2 degrees, with just hot water bottles, hot drinks, hot baths and 6 or 7 woollies to keep us warm.
The first couple of gas fitters we contacted were either too busy or very expensive or both. However we finally struck gold. Simon Read of Premier Heating & Plumbing, who we’d already booked to do the pipework for our new gas fires, rescued us and installed a new boiler, new pump, and new pipework where the old stuff had corroded. He also laid some very neat new pipes under the rear hall and living room floor for the new fire, and around the side of the house for the new fire in the music room.
So we only had two weeks to endure the cold. Although it was miserable (mainly because I also had a streaming cold), I found myself realising that my parents grew up like this, and EVERYONE before them. And yes, I do just about remember what it was like before we lived in a house with central heating – getting dressed in front of the living room electric fire, mum bringing me hot water bottles for bed every night, ice inside the bedroom windows in the winter. These days we are so spoilt!