The last piece of the puzzle was completed yesterday - we are FINALLY done!
The barn end has been replaced and the roof capped so that the Pembrokeshire winter gales (hopefully) don't blow the roof off again.
The knackered old doors have been replaced with two field gates which have been clad with composite boarding - we can open each of the gates independently - particularly useful in inclement weather when we can open the top gate only to let light and air in.
We used two different contractors for the fencing.
A small piece of fencing was required to effectively split the badlands into two and keep the goats out of the caravan.
A bigger undertaking was to replace the perimeter fencing for the area which we wanted the goats to have access to (one half of The Badlands). Clearly a miscommunication occurred and on our return from a visit to our friends at Moat Goats we found the fencing guys three quarters round the entire perimeter of The Badlands - all the old fencing posts were down so there was really no option than to carry on! Eventually we will do something with the other half so we came to the conclusion that it was actually better to get it all done in one go... at the very least it will stop Dave getting grumpy with the lambs breaking in from the neighbouring field next year.
Due to the heavy machinery required to replace the barn end, the paddock area had been churned up and resembled the Somme - wet mud is not good for goat feet so the final piece of work was to dig out the mud and fill in with hardcore - this was completed yesterday:
And so to the inside - whilst we had completed the main part of the barn prior to the girls arrival, we needed to prepare for the arrival of The Emperor (our new boy) - we decided to section the rear part of the barn with gates so that we have the flexibility to create smaller pens at kidding time. This required fences to be attached to existing steels... quite a bit of colourful language and many drill bits later the four gates were hung with another exterior gate at the other end of the barn.
If I never have to hang another gate again....
The Emperor arrived on Thursday, very kindly delivered by our friends at Moat Goats - unluckily for them 101 bales of straw arrived at the same time - thanks guys for helping us get it in the barn, it might have been a very late night otherwise!
And so, 6 months in, we have completed all planned outdoor construction work and we have our little herd of goats which, if The Emperor does his job, will start to grow next year.
The greatest reward is watching the girls enjoying themselves outside. The greatest surprise is how easy it is to get them back in again!