Here's the living room fireplace two days after we moved in.
"What lovely Doolin slate!", visitors politely said. "How dark and depressing!", I thought, feeling a bit sorry for Doolin.
So when the boxes were unpacked I applied my notorious predilection for white paint (which probably stems from a teenage fascination with Tippex) and painted it.
I quite like it now, but it's only a stopgap. When I can bear the negotiation and the din of dealing with builders again, that fire surround will come off.
We suspect there's a much larger original old cottage fireplace behind it, so, God Willing, that'll be exposed and replastered in white, and we'll put in an ivory enamel stove and merrily burn up the turf and the tax demands.