Once again we have been impressed with how workmen here arrive and just get on with the job. We gave them a cup of coffee, and then they worked until midday. After lunch they worked until 5.30, when M. Douady joined us for an apéro.
I was sort of surprised to see that the old fireplace (brown marble) was actually cement - painted brown marble. I knew it couldn't have been real marble - it would have taken an enormous block of stone to carve the deep releifs out of - so I don't know what I was expecting to see.
The back of the old fireplaceOne of the things M. Douady did yesterday was remove the terracotta bricks from above the old mantlepiece, exposing some stonework we didnt realise we had. We have decided to leave the stone on the chimney breast exposed once our new fireplace is installed. It is on an internal wall, so there is no need to insulate, and the tuffeau of the fireplace should match the tuffeau of the chimney breast nicely - after it has been well cleaned, that is.