David Challis and Chris Read have converted a former toilet block in Pakefield into a holiday cottage.

This building, 20 metres from the beach in Pakefield, used to be an unsightly toilet block. Chris and David, two local men, bought it, converting it to a desirable, well used holiday cottage: ‘Beach Cottage’. I’m disappointed it wasn’t ‘Loo with a View’ or ‘Wee Cottage’

Last night we watched ‘DIY SOS’. ‘Surfability’, is a project in South Wales. Run from an inadequate, dilapidated old building it provides surfing opportunities for children with disabilities. Last year over 500 children took part; there’s a waiting list.  

Nick Knowles and his team arrived. With local tradesmen and generous local support the old building was renovated and converted; a new purpose built centre was designed and constructed.

The new building was handed over to a delighted team of workers and volunteers; this new building will provide greater opportunities for disabled children and their families; ‘Surfability’ will flourish.

The programme always has the same structure:

  • Crisis: The story, needs and difficulties.
  • Climax: Action; an old building is converted
  • Conversion: A converted building leads to delight and converted lives.

Musing that William Wilberforce’s conversion to Christianity involved three similar stages:

Crisis: This young member of parliament in his early twenties had rejected Christian faith. He brought his doubts and objections to his friend Isaac Milner. Gradually thoughts became beliefs that became profound convictions.

Climax: Like many Christians through the centuries he went through a time of spiritual anguish, a ‘dark night of the soul’. He realised the cost and change that conversion to Christian faith would require.

Conversion: Working out his decision, he informed those he worked with, including Pitt the prime minister; he identified with the ‘Evangelicals’ that he once despised, receiving particular help from John Newton, the ex-sailor, ex-slave trader, now a rector in London.  

Newton knew about ‘conversion’ when he wrote: ‘I once was lost but now am found, was blind but now I see.’

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