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Replacing a shed

I think my shed is on its last winter but at just over 30 years old it's done well. It's had a new roof, and new felt and some of the boards replaced in the last 6 years, but It's the floor that's starting to rot, it has white mould on it now by the door and it smells strongly of mould inside, the problem is that it sits at the bottom of a slope and so gets the water when it rains heavily. It was put in by previous house owners and I'm not sure it's even on flag stones, if it was then I think they've long since sunk into the clay ground. 

It's fairly big, 10' x 8'. The quality of things now just doesn't seem good anymore though. I'm guessing it's lasted so well because of what the wood was probably treated with in the 80s/90s. It's been painted with cuprinol garden shades and it really fits in with the garden, we even painted the inside too and put lighting and a little folding potting bench to work on. So I'd miss that!

Ideally I'd like to replace it with a brick built shed on a concrete base, but I'm thinking planning permission would be needed even for a small brick outbuilding? I saw some aluminium ones years ago, has anyone had one of those? And I saw some plastic ones that I'm not sure about.

I like the idea of brick built for the security as well. With a decent secure door and window, uPVC or aluminium. But I think it could be quite expensive. Has anyone tackled building one themselves?

Or is there a reasonable way to repair the floor in the shed I've got to give a few more years? 

Ideas appreciated



  • RubytooRubytoo Posts: 1,468
    edited 21 November
    I think I would bite the bullet and replace it with a brick built if you can.

    You are so right about the quality of timber .
    Our fences are a brick pillar with a low brick wall then feather edged boards in the gaps with arris rails.
    The oldest are now giving up  ( nearly forty years old!) with two more recently replaced sections rotting in around ten years. Compared to the original build.

    The old creosote /tar based may now be seen as environmentally  unsound now.
    But you tell me which is preferable. A fence painted with naff water based sh*t does not last. Replace the fence every ten years if you are lucky.

    It needs a PRESEVATIVE preventative which protects the wood from fungi and is oil based and soaks in.
    Not a vaguely waxy water based slop which will trap water if you apply it when wood is even slightly damp.

    Oh sorry ranty rant (nearly )over .
    Ranting on your behalf  :D
    Carefully and considerately applied strong stuff is more environmentally friendly long term that a repeated thin muck spread over every year or two with repeated trips to buy new naff fence panels made of cheap wood and not very preservative fence paint repeatedly replaced and applied.

    @raisingirl might be the one to say about planning but I think you might be okay if it is below a certain height. 
    Check the local planning laws with your council site.

    It is worth pursuing if you are staying where you are.

  • I've always found that once the floor starts to deteriorate, you might as well bite the bullet and fork (pun intended) out for a new one - especially if the underlying flag stones have sunk.

    The idea of a brick built one sounds great, but beware. See below link. 

    Good luck, @InBloom
  • McRazzMcRazz Posts: 368
    I'm about to embark on a self build and have ordered the timber for a variation of this design but as a 6x8...

    A shed like this could be built on skids, concrete pad, gravel grid or any number of foundations. No planning permission would be required to my knowledge.

    Most timber suppliers would guarantee external grade (UC4) timber for 30 years if properly maintained so it sounds like your shed was well cared for and lived out its expected life. I can't imagine the timber quality is any different to 30 years ago except for perhaps fewer carcinogens in its preservation.

    If by quality you're referring to the shed kits that the high street retailers sell then yes, i agree, I've seen more structural integrity in a wasp nest.  

  • FireFire Posts: 18,068
    edited 21 November
    My inherited shed is probably 30 years old and showing no sign of collapse, and now I wonder, re the above, maybe it was coated in creosote decades back which is why it's doing so well.

    My inherited "summer house" (shed) was coated in Barn Paint probably 20 years ago and it has only been done one when originally put in and has never needed any work since. It's good stuff.

    Only a slightly different note, a landscaping guy put in some sleepers to make a raised bed for me. Only later did I realise they were soaked in creosote. No edibles are grown in it (though I would like to have the option. Would this bother anyone?

  • RubytooRubytoo Posts: 1,468
    Fire said:

    Only a slightly different note, a landscaping guy put in some sleepers to make a raised bed for me. Only later did I realise they were soaked in creosote. No edibles are grown in it (though I would like to have the option. Would this bother anyone?

    Are they the old recycled ones?
    I think that old sleepers are mostly well worn by now.
    If they do not smell or have a noticeable oily creosote residue or leakage.
    It does depend.

    They come in different grades and quality.
    Also if using recycled railway sleepers there are places that offer old ones that are not treated.
    I have forgotten what kind of wood but they are some kind of tropical hard wood and some are oak too. 
  • FireFire Posts: 18,068
    Yes old recycled ones from literal railways. I have no desire for new wood.
  • RubytooRubytoo Posts: 1,468
    @Fire if you wanted to or have another opportunity/space. Look for suppliers that have the tropical hardwood  Azobe and Jarrah are names to look for, and they are longer crossing timbers, they may cost a tiny bit more but no creosote was used on those ones as they didn't need it.
    Still re cycled and graded like the creosote ones.

    Might also be an option for anyone building a new shed for a floor?
    It is hard to find a good source of slower grown  or quality timber these days. Not the rubbish from the DIY sheds.
  • FireFire Posts: 18,068
    The trade in tropical hardwoods are very dodgy. I would source with care, if anyone is pursuing that avenue.

  • RubytooRubytoo Posts: 1,468
    I am Not talking about trading in new wood.
    I am talking about old recycled wood from railways.
    I am so sorry, I thought I had made that obvious.

    Apologies to @InBloom for side tracking your topic.
  • raisingirlraisingirl Posts: 7,006
    @InBloom these are the national rules on sheds without planning - where and how big are the issues, not what it's made from
    Planning Permission - Outbuildings - Planning Portal

    Note that if you live in a conservation area or an AONB or National Park, some permitted development rights may have been rescinded locally and if your house is reasonably new, you need to check the planning permission because some have all or most permitted development rights removed.
    “It's still magic even if you know how it's done.” 
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