The RUC has landed
When I decided to return to my home in the country I found that the old house had really become an ‘old house’. I was determined to fix her up and bring her back to her former glory. Once the walls were down and the irreparable damage uncovered from white ants and the last cyclone, I realised she had to come down.
Coincidence is a beautiful thing. A friend of a friend knew of my disappointment and found that an old Rugby Union Club in the heart of Cairns was going to be demolished. This Rugby Union Club (which has come to be affectionately known as The RUC) is over 100 years old. After a building inspection, the RUC was deemed to be in structurally sound condition. It had been sitting on this site for about 50 years and before that had been a homestead in Smithfield (one of the original houses in the region). The design of the RUC is Federation Queenslander, which was very popular in the tropics pre WWI.
We were told we could have the RUC at no cost to move onto the farm.
When I say no cost – I’m not saying this has been a cheap exercise. Relatively speaking, it wasn’t overly expensive to move, however (apart from hiring a company to move it – Miles & Co who did a brilliant job) there were a lot of hidden costs. Fees to the regional council for inspections, applications and approvals, architectural drawings, energy efficiency ratings, clean-up of old site, preparation of new site – they all add up.
There were also a number of applications that needed to be made to the police (road escort), Road traffic authority (bridges and traffic lights), Queensland rail (house to go over tracks) and Ergon Energy (house to go under powerlines). Getting all these together was like waiting for the planets to align. Each of these applications only last for several days and (for example) if the police were unavailable on the day, our application to the RTA would expire and we would have to re-apply.
All up, getting the applications and ticking the boxes to move the RUC took four months. I’m thinking it will be another two months before the house is ready for me to move in. I’m putting a new roof on it, redoing the floors, putting in a new kitchen and bathroom and adding another set of stairs.
There’s still some work to do – but she’s here now. Let the fun begin!
Sorry if I’ve been absent from your posts for a while – but I’ve been a little busy 😀