Queen of the Castle

It is every child's dream to build a beautiful sandcastle but  unfortunately  only  to  see  high  tide pushing in and collapsing their toil.

This  will  however  not be true for a new resident in De Kelders. Tessa Halvorsen is building her sandcastle over-looking Walker Bay. Tessa, who is a stylist in the film industry, bought the plot in De Villiers Street and decided to build a sandbag house.

Specially made small sandbags are filled by her and three Masakhane woman.Tessa is on site full time and also oversees the building of the foundation and wooden structure. The sandbags will be placed in a single layer between the wooden supports and later covered with reclaimed wooden panels on the inside. It can also be covered with chicken mess and then plastered. The outside will be covered with white colour bond aluminium sheeting. According to Tessa the building cost can vary between one half and a third of what a traditionally build brick and mortar house costs. Due to the sand filled walls the house promises to be cool in summer and warm in winter.

Francois de Jongh

Tessa Halvorsen at the building site in De Kelders.
Fltr: Victoria Meahlwana, Lucia Witbooi, Selina Saalman