‘Cause & Effect’ in Ambergris Caye, Belize.

Regular readers of this blog, the reason for its being is to record our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize, will recall from earlier editions, I am sure, that the foundations for our home – because of the low lying nature of our land in Tres Cocos- had to be built much higher than the plans stipulated.

One consequence was that the golf cart ramp had to be extended so that the gradient was not as steep. Well, when Rose and I visited the site yesterday evening, after I returned from the dentist, we noticed another couple of unwanted effects caused by the increased height of the foundations.

At it’s planned height it was possible to step up to the Ground Floor from ground level. This just isn’t possible now given the increased height of the foundations.


You would need a trampoline from ground level or mountain climbing boots to access the Ground Floor via the ramp.

Rose and I discussed the problem and decided that the solution is to allocate 2 foot nine inches of the ramp space for stairs. We considered other possible solutions but we thought that this one would be the easiest and least costly to implement.

When we got to our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize this morning we discussed the feasibility of it with Anhill and he agreed with our thinking. We also discussed the way that the stairs from the ground level to the Ground Floor would look if the concrete is poured into the forms as they are currently made up. Far too wide with the northern section serving no useful purpose ( it would have done had the height of the foundations not been increased).

We were still discussing the effects caused by the elevated height of the foundations when Daniel Camal, our building contractor, arrived and he joined the discussion and within a few minutes we agreed upon the solutions.


The forms to the left of the entrance ( left-hand wall) to the Ground Floor will now be removed.

As to the creation of stairs within the ramp area, they will have a width of thirty-three inches, a depth of twenty inches and the risers will be seven inches but these will not start until forty inches into the ramp.


The stairs will be created along the right-hand side of the ramp.

With the problems resolved Rose and I went home for a quick lunch.

I returned to the site in the afternoon to see the concrete being poured for the eight inch beams that will ‘sit’ on top of the first six courses of concrete blocks ( further six courses of ‘blocks will be laid on top of the beams).


Pouring the concrete for the beam for the northern wall of the store room.


Edson with the vibrator, ably assisted by Daniel.


They then got to work with the trowel to level off the concrete.


How it looks when finished.

I took the opportunity to see what the additional bathroom size looks like now that the first six courses of ‘blocks have been laid.


That’s big enough! The corridor to the left of the bathroom leads past the other bedroom into the kitchen/living room area.

For those of you that dread the word rebar close your eyes. It is a boring subject I know but, like it or not, rebar is an essential element of our build and they were getting ready for the next big use of it.


Testing the height of the rebar for the columns to support the ceiling of the Ground Floor/ floor of the First Floor.


Stacking the rebar on the northern side of the house ready for use.

OK, you can open your eyes now.

The headline is based on the self-titled first album by Cause & Effect which was released in 1990.


  1. Grace Novotny says:

    I’ve always liked those expanded type stairways allowing an approach from several angles and nice and wide. Looks good John n Rose.

    Randy and Grace

    1. Grace, Had the left-hand side of the stairs provided access to the Ground Floor we would have kept it. But it doesn’t, so serves no useful purpose. Kind regards John

  2. Jane says:

    John, When my husband was here from the states, he walked up to your build many times to watch progress but never ran I to you on site. We’re having the best fun watching the evolution of your home, and since he’s gone back now for several months, I forward your blog to him daily.
    Just wanted you to know that we both think you have one of the most perfect lots in the area with truly amazing views, and it’s a pleasure sharing your build with you daily.

    1. Jane, when your husband next visits Ambergris Caye just send an email and we will be more than happy to walk you around the build. By the time he next comes there will be a lot more to look at! Your comments regarding the blog are truly appreciated and I am more than pleased to share our experience with you. As to the location of our new home, we couldn’t agree more. May have a spare lot to sell at some point in the future! Kind regards John

  3. Hello Rose and John

    First time I have looked on your blog. It looks a vast property under construction. Health and Safety probably not taken as seriously as the UK projects!! I’m sure it will be the business when complete and you will have your fixtures and fittings plus furniture as you want them to call it your home. Also make sure you have storage for the Arsenal trophies!! What’s the timescale for completion?
    I was in Ferry just before New Years Eve and it now has wooden floors and been redecorated. There was only 3 customers in there though incl Geordie Steve. The Nelly seems to have taken off and was very busy. Stve has installed a very large screen for the football
    Victoria Station is still progressing although the weather has been dreadful here. Check out the links below for further info
    Are the Gunners going to make a late surge for a Champions League place?
    Coventry playing Preston tonight in the Johnston Paint Trophy semi final on Sky Sports 1
    I was at the FACUP 3 game v Spurs last week and the quality difference was obvious
    Take care and keep in touch
    Best wishes


    1. Hi Jim, yes it is going to be fairly big ( just over 3,000 square feet of living space) but that Rose and I will not get in each other’s way. H&S. What’s that? They don’t wear boots let alone hard hats! Had heard from Russ that work was going on to refurbish The Ferry. Sounds very nice but honestly we do not miss it at all. Really have no idea how Arsenal will fare this year. Good one game, atrocious the next. He needs to buy but doubt that he will. Coventry have done well since Robbin’s appointment. Presume that you are relatively happy? Will take a look at the Victoria Station development. Give our regards to any of the ‘old’ faces that you see. Regards John and Rose.

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