Five tips for decorating ceilings

PA Photo/thinkstockphotos
PA Photo/thinkstockphotos

Ceilings get stained by things like water leaks, candles, light bulbs, and smoke from real wood fires.

Scrubbing the stain and repainting sometimes works, but you often need to use an oil-based stain-block or damp-seal paint first (try Ronseal Damp Seal, from £7 for 400ml, B&Q), to prevent the stain coming through again (see how-to tip below).

Decorating ceilings should be done before decorating the rest of a room because of splatters and drips, so if it’s just the ceiling that needs attention, you’ll have to paint with great care.

When using oil-based paint on a ceiling, it’s essential to wear safety goggles in case the paint gets in your eyes. In fact, wearing goggles and a shower cap is always a good idea when painting a ceiling, so your face and hair don’t get covered. Attaching your paint roller to an extension pole, so you paint standing on the floor, rather than at the top of a ladder will help too. This is easier, but does make it harder to get a good finish, as you can’t see roller lines, bits you’ve missed and debris in the paint so well from the floor compared to up a ladder.

The easiest paints to use on ceilings, especially if you’re not decorating the rest of the room, are semi-solid ones, such as Dulux’s Pure Brilliant White Solid (£16.97 for 2.5ltr, B&Q). These splatter and drip less because they’re not runny, but come in a very limited range of colours. If the ceiling’s less than perfect, use a matt emulsion - one with a sheen will highlight imperfections.

Ceilings are prone to hairline cracks, especially if there are rooms above, and these are hard to eradicate permanently. Your best bet is to open up the crack slightly using the blade of a utility knife, paint PVA into it to help filler adhere and, after a few minutes, apply the filler. Try Toupret Fibacryl (£6.50 for 310ml, www.protoolsdirect.co.uk) - unlike most fillers, this seems to keep cracks closed long term. Another good solution is to paper the ceiling with lining paper, or have the ceiling replastered. The plasterer should tape over the cracks to prevent them from coming through the new plaster, but if they miss any, the cracks will reappear. Lath and plaster ceilings are particularly prone to hairline cracks and to truly get rid of them, you’ll have to pull down the ceiling (a very messy job), and start again with plasterboard.

In the past, it was common to put textured wallpaper, Artex or polystyrene tiles (which can be a fire hazard) on ceilings. Replastering the ceiling is usually the easiest and best solution, but you will have to remove the wallpaper and tiles first, which can be hard work.

Thomas Saveall won the Project Spotlight Volunteer award at the Citizens Advice Scotland conference. He was presented with a silver Quaich by HRH Princess Anne. Picture - Stewart Attwood''''All images � Stewart Attwood Photography 2019.  All other rights are reserved. Use in any other context is expressly prohibited without prior permission. No Syndication Permitted.

Taylor Wimpey have confirmed directly with local Councillor Nathan Wilson that the organisation retains its commitment to building a park and ride at Shieldmuir Train Station. In response to recent enquiries made by Councillor Wilson, Taylor Wimpey have advised that engagement is taking place with Network Rail over the latter’s approval procedures and that once this process is complete, work will be able to begin on site. The developer has informed the Motherwell Councillor that during the period of investigation undertaken since the commencement of building work was delayed in January 2018, an unrecorded service chamber has been discovered on site. The project cannot move forward until further clarification is provided on the nature of the service chamber and Taylor Wimpey are in the process of commissioning a contractor to assess the situation. The developer’s initial judgement is that this is likely a redundant service. A senior representative of the organisation has also informed Councillor Wilson that a member of the Taylor Wimpey production team will be sent out to inspect the vacant land following a request he made at the beginning of 2019 for maintenance work to be carried out on site should construction of the park and ride remain some time away. Councillor Nathan Wilson said: “Taylor Wimpey have communicated to me directly that the park and ride facility is a project that the organisation remains committed to delivering. “However, it goes without saying that the lengthy delay is still very disappointing and frustrating. “An unrecorded service chamber has been identified on site and progress is unable to be made until this has been investigated. “Taylor Wimpey have relayed to me that an on-site inspection of the vacant land will take place and I hold to the view that maintenance work should be carried out in the short term to improve it’s current condition. “I will continue to engage with the relevant stakeholders and re-inforce to them the importance of the park and ride project locally. Motherwell and Wishaw CAB takes home 40 per cent of the prizes