I am a big fan of Critical Path Analysis, essential in project management to track what needs to happen before something else can take place. I did a very simple CPA chart for the very first steps towards making the house suitable for full-time rather than holiday-home living, a lot of which involves finding places to put my stuff, currently blocking up several rooms of my father’s house and his entire double garage. This involves disposing of a lot of things out of the garage, and moving new and existing shelving units into it, creating space in the house for bigger and better shelving and extending the storage capacity of both house and garage.
So my CPA looked something like this yesterday: before I can move in boxes of things, I need to sort out the garage, including removing all the rubbish in there, painting the walls and floor, fixing the leak in the roof, blocking the gaps between the roof and the wall and then putting up heavy duty shelving. Amongst the stuff that needs removing are two huge chests of draws. As there is no council or commercial dump around here since the one at Machynlleth closed, the next step was to order Gwynedd Council’s bulky goods removal service, which would also get rid of a single bed and a futon that are taking up much-needed storage and desk space. So I went ahead and ordered the low shelving for the spare bedroom where the spare single bed currently stands, the high shelving for the main bedroom (replacing the low shelving in the bedroom that will go at the back of the garage), the desk and chair for where the futon sits and the heavy duty shelving for the right side of the garage. Then I went on to the Gwynedd website and ordered my bulk goods removal.
My Critical Path snafu was ordering the furniture before checking out bulk waste collection dates, based on an erroneous assumption that collection of my bulky items would take place within a couple of days. The earliest that Gwynedd can come is 9th August – 10 days away. So all this stuff from Amazon is turning up and there will be nowhere to put any of it until the 9th!
It is going to be interesting to see how I can fulfil Gwynedd’s requirement for me to get all five objects (two chest of draws, the futon, the bed and the mattress) outside where they are “easily visible” on my own, but I dare say I’ll manage. God help the elderly and the infirm.
Gwynedd Council’s charges a whopping £23 for 5 items, £46 for 10 items. Southwark Council, from which I have just come, charged me £16 for 10 items just before I left. It would be less of a shock if there was anywhere around here where I could take the stuff to dump myself, but since the council dump in Machynlleth closed down a few years ago, there has been nothing. I drove to Dolgellau last year, where the Gwynedd website said there was a recycling centre, but that was a rather pathetic little affair, designed for local recycling of food, tins and bottles, not the disposal of bulk items like an eight-draw chest of draws, a bed base, mattress and a futon. Someone told me that the Machynlleth tip closed because there was a problem with the contractor that operated it on behalf of the council. Whether this is true or not I don’t know, but it would have been handy if Gwynedd had come up with a replacement local solution to disposing of household and similar items. However, I am counting my blessings because my friend Cheryll, who lives in Gloucester, informs me that Gloucester Council charges £24 for three items, £8 for each additional item and take an eternity to arrive.