left behind (2)

Carrying on the thread from my previous post, here are a few more photos of the house and barn as we found them, eight years ago.



DCF 1.0

When I first glimpsed the barn, walking over to it, I could see the remains of an old blue 1970’s Ford sticking out of the end wall, half-buried, beneath a collapsed garage door… But those walls!  I was suddenly able to see beyond the clatter of the rusty tin roof as the wind whistled through and take in the sheer beauty of the red sandstone structure itself. Such great care and pride had once gone into the building of it – and oh, was it solid and quite magnificent!

I imagined the vicious storms these walls must have seen off, as they comforted and sheltered the livestock within. As we walked around the barn, Ross and I looked at each other and knew we were both thinking the same thing.
What a space it was – at least 50 feet long by about 20 deep; while the light streaming   down through the gaping holes on the back-facing side of the  roof provided natural skylights. It took my breath away.  (from “Drawn to the North”)


DCF 1.0


Opinan Croft 112


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Room with a view…


DCF 1.0


We soon discovered that the only safe route under-foot across this room was to tread carefully on the strip of wallpaper  – the rest of the floor had almost completely rotted through, beneath the old carpet.


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One of the crumbling dormer windows


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A downstairs bedroom (above)…


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another dormer, its eyes half-shut as it was…


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… and the well-preserved bedroom behind the window above – the upper floor had certainly fared better against the elements… the broken windows, while letting in new ‘winged’ residents, provided the necessary ventilation to ensure that the damp conditions (it being so battered by rain and the pretty constant winds off the Minch) didn’t take their usual toll on the bones of the house.

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