Manchester Electric worked on the most ambitious project that “This Old House” has ever taken on — a 10-month, $1.5 million renovation of a 1883 home in Manchester, Mass.

“The house was in rough shape when we got there, but by the end of it, it was absolutely beautiful,” said Pete Woodbury, who has worked for Manchester Electric for 12 years. “It's very traditional with an English look to it. The kitchen has cherry cabinets, and they used a lot of historical colored paints.”

Woodbury said it was a very fast-paced job.

“We redid the whole house,” he said. “On and off, I was on the project for 18 months. We did all the residential wiring, cable and telephone, and found a little bit of the BX wiring and the knob-and-tube. The old wiring was basically all torn out.”

Rather than an old home, it was like a new construction job for the tradesmen.

“Everything was basically brand new in the house except for like two walls that they saved in the guest room,” Woodbury said. “It was a different pace for us, but it was a great experience. We didn't really have a lot of surprises because it was new construction and new construction goes fairly well.”

The crew added a brand-new addition with a music room and sound room.

“We have special cove lighting up in the vaulted ceiling,” he said. “There's five bedrooms, an art room and an exercise room upstairs. Four people live in that 9,000-sq-ft house.”

After a year-and-a-half of hard work, Woodbury said it was all worth it. The “This Old House” project led to another contract to do the landscape lighting.

“It was great to see the end result,” he said. “The place is beautiful.”

BEFORE & AFTER
Manchester Electric helped restore this 1883 home to its turn-of-the-century splendor. The photos below depict the project’s progression.


The Manchester house, circa 1920.


The home mid-construction.


The seaside beauty today.