The ceiling beams have been exposed and washed. But now what? I need to put something on them that makes them look better and makes it easier to get stuff like paint off them. (The plan is to have plasterboard between the beams, and that needs painting.) But what? I did a bit of light googling. The neighbour had recommended varnish, but I thought his beams looked a bit too glossy. I was pondering wax or oil. And the googling made me decide on trying boiled linseed oil. It does the job, is easy to apply, quite affordable and it doesn't give too much shine. So one day I decided to bike home past the Screwfix and buy some.
When I got home I looked for a suitable inconspicuous bit where I could try the stuff out. I settled on a small beam near the fireplace. And applied the oil with the nearest cloth I had available. And I think it looks OK! So I think I'll proceed with it. So the next phase has started!