By Aliki Kraterou
An amazing DIY dad has made sure his twins will spend isolation in the best way possible- playing in a Tudor style playhouse and driving their own mini- Land Rover.
Craig Clavin, 35, an engineer from Fleggburgh, Great Yarmouth, shunned a traditional wendy house for his boys – and instead decided to used salvaged building materials to create a Tudor mansion for twins Hugo and Ralph, five.
And while their school pals might be stuck indoors, the lucky pair also have their own 4×4 – after their talented dad converted an old mobility scooter .
Craig also built a fully-functioning brick pizza oven in the family garden last summer – which usually cost upwards of £5000 – on a budget – so the family are now set for a fun summer of not leaving the house.
Craig said: “It is a difficult situation, they’re very lucky boys, but we do work hard to make these things and they are very appreciative of everything they have.
“Even without a prompt from us, they always say how lucky and happy they are.
“I’m sure parents find it hard to keep the kids entertained at home, I still have to do my day job working from home, but when it’s time to have a break we have lots to do.
“Right now we are building a wildlife pond and waterfall, spring is taking hold so lots of gardening to do, and then I have my own car projects – so you could say I’ve been self isolating in my workshop for years.
” I used to make dens when I was younger so I always wanted to build something similar for my kids
“I had some building materials left from the renovation of my house and I worked on an industrial area so I could get all sorts of wood from there.
“I drew the design on a piece of paper at work and then I started building it.
“The twins helped painting it and sand it, and they absolutely loved it when it was finished.
“It was a really nice project for all of us to work together, they were interested in working with their hands.
“We still continue working on projects, you give them a bit of sandpaper and they ll sand for hours.
“The spiders have made the house their home over winter, but we are all looking forward to the spring clean and getting lots of use out of it now.
“The boys are growing quite quickly and are already getting a little too big for it, although its still quite a nice garden ornament, and perhaps one day it can be re-purposed as a very small outdoor writing or reading room.
“The twins loved the Land Rover- an adult can fit in it so being driven around by a five year old is incredibly weird.
“Watching them driving around the field and scream at each other to slow down is really good fun.
“As for the oven, the kids absolutely love pizza so I thought I’d make a pizza oven.”
Craig says the project of the shed took him six months and cost less than £400, as he used largely salvaged building materials.
The Land Rover was based on a £50 mobility scooter and plans purchased online and overall cost £500 and the outdoors kitchen cost less than £400.
And although he admits he has saved probably saved his family thousands of pounds but that’s not the main reason he enjoys working on them.
He says it’s a great activity for the twins as they learn to work with their hands.
He added: “I involve the boys when I can, and they love helping me- it is sometimes hard to strike a balance between the digital world and being ‘hands-on’, so the boys feel encouraged by what they see and apply the same ‘can-do’ attitude.
“We are certainly not afraid of letting them play with tools, or even light the wood burner. We satisfy their curiosity in a controlled environment and in the end we have two very intelligent, happy and well-rounded five year olds. “