Sunday, September 20, 2009

Tarte House: Burning Down The Barn

This morning, my brother-in-law Denis called the Highgate Fire Department to see if we needed a permit to burn the partially collapsed barn on our newly acquired Tarte Road property. Two or three different parties had already gleaned beams and the metal roofing material. There were no shingles, insulation or siding on the building. There was a lot of old hay. The chief said we didn't need a permit.

(Notice that I took this photo before the round bales on the left were vandalized.)

I was cheesemaking, so I arrived about an hour after the fire started; I had hoped to have a "before" photo of the sad state of the barn, but you'll have to use your imagination.

There were definitely look-e-loos hanging around, but the ones blocking the road were State Officials. I don't know if they were called in by residents complaining about the open burn, but as you can see in the above photos, this is a rural location on a dirt road and there are no real "neighbors" near the property.

The Staties took photos and called the fire department to put the fire out, stating that we needed a permit, and getting a bit rude about it. At this point, the barn was nearly gone. I suppose we'll find out what kind of bureaucratic nonsense this was all about in about a month or so - after we receive a fine, and contact a lawyer.

A couple of days later and there is just rubble remaining. We have a meeting in the near future with an agent from the Vermont Land Trust about what bits of the land are conserved and what we are allowed to do with them.