A Heritage Restored  
  The Restoration Process  
  3.1 Overview  
 
 
The Restoration

Initial planning to move the house was done carefully together with University of Malaya. This was done after a complete set of measured drawings were produced and dilapidated survey report was carried out by the University. All of the timber components of the house were marked and labeled to prepare for the reconstruction, as not to loose the historical value and original timber components of the house. Unfortunately, we had to change all of the timber floor planks as they were no longer useable, and not safe to be reused due to decay after long periods of neglect. Parts of the timber components were taken down and stored under a shed. The most difficult task was the removing of the clay tiles. The roof tiles which was imported from India, are no longer in production.

*(picture : View of the house under restoration.)

We, however managed to source out the same roof tiles from an old shophouse around the area to replace the broken roof tiles. Approximately, 40% of the clay tiles were broken during the removal. We also had to fill the new designated site land with the additional earth as it was below the road level and prone to water stagnation. It was also difficult to replace the roof tiles back together as it required special workmen to carry out the task. It took months to place back the tiles piece by piece. The concrete main staircase which cannot be moved, was reconstructed following the drawings of the original design prepared by University Malaya. New Balau flooring were used to replace the old timber flooring.

A new site was identified approximately 50 meters from the original site and away from the trunk road to Ipoh. The original house faces West, however due to site constraints the house now faces North and a slip road. Earth works were carried out to level the site as it was slightly undulating. The actual restoration works started in September 2002 and slowly after the foundation were laid the same main columns and beams were again re-erected after approximately 80 years. The wall and window panels were placed back in between columns to braced the columns and beams. The solid timber roof truss were then placed to complete the structure of the house. The restoration of the house was completed in May 2003.

A new coat of yellow paint, following the colour before the restoration gave the house a fresh regal look. The kitchen section of the house was not moved as it has no historical value. A new “Lanai” or platform overlooking the Durian Orchard were built at the back of the house. This new additional provides a sense of openness to the house and it provides an elevated view of the orchard and the nearby stream. The Lanai will be used as area for outdoor dining and seating area. Soon after, the landscaping works and a new driveway were carried out.