When we built the barn here at the farm, we knew that we wanted to include a wild flower roof. Not only do they look great but they are especially beneficial for wildlife (and the bees we keep, too).
It all seemed relatively straight forward until during one of our weekly planning meetings someone raised the issue of weight. Turf is heavy stuff. Turf with flowers and sedum is even heavier. WET turf with flowers and sedum is REALLY heavy! So, when it rains, would the roof support the huge weight of the wet, wild flower roof?
It’s a good question – and quite an important one to address! It’s also one that causes a LOT of headache and concern. How can we be sure the roof will support the weight? What if it won’t? What are the alternative roof coverings? What additional work is going to be required (and additional expense)? As you near the end of the build, a lot of quite stressful things often arise and our project was no different – things were getting intense, we had still a lot of work to be done, a fully booked training day in just a few days time and still no roof! There was a lot going on and the barn was already way over budget and subsequently, there were quite a few sleepless nights.
It’s at times like this that you need a trusted, reliable, honest, professional and above all calm person to seek advice and guidance from. So I turned to Derek Mason at Super Structure Associates. I’d met Derek, all-be-it-briefly, many months ago and when I put a call out on social media for some help, Derek volunteered. And we’re really pleased he did.
On his advice, we made a few changes to the structure of the barn but it wasn’t so much the technical guidance that impressed me most and helped to put my mind at ease; it was he genuine enthusiasm and interest in the project. He literally stepped in and took charge, guiding the problem to a solution and kept in touch to find out how things were progressing – we couldn’t more thankful or full of praise for Derek’s professionalism, knowledge and expert guidance. We now affectionately call the roof, covered in its abundance of wild flowers, “Derek’s Meadow”.
You can see the barn for yourself on one of our many upcoming courses, or if you’re looking for a peaceful, creative, quiet and inspiring place for your next meeting, check out www.hirethebarn.com – we’d love to see you.