Potential damp cottage wall - Help


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Hey guys!
I just registered on this forum and thought I give it a try as I am really struggling at the moment.

I own an old cottage in Dorset which I’m renovating at the moment.
The pre owners haven’t used the cottage for 30 years. So it has not been heated at all.

every single wall is fine, except for the wall in the dining room. It is an outside wall. The wall used to have (by the look of it) plaster on it. However, the plaster comes off the wall (it literally is like a bubble that you can just knock into).
I am now trying to remove all the plaster. It looks like the actual wall behind the bad plaster, which is (I think) made out of concrete is damp? But the “concrete”?! Itself behind the plaster is still super hard even though it might be damp.
The outside wall does not show any signs of salt, damp or cracks where water could come through.

Can anybody by the look of the wall tell me if the wall is damp? And if so, what the best solution is to solve that problem?

no water or wastage pipes are running through this wall by the way.

I hope I have given you all the information you need to give me a suggestion or a fix.

I am new to “Wall DIY” so please be kind I have some PVA at home for the wall.. but I’m not sure if I should just dry the wall, put pva on it and then some new Plaster or render. If necessary even plaster board.

Thank you for your help need any more information please just let me know :)


ps. I obviously want to rip off the bad plaster completely


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the wall looks wet to me. it is a sand and cement backing coat that needs to come off then dry the wall out . then employ a plasterer to plaster the wall in limelite renovating plaster.
Yep get it done properly with lime just finding someone who works with lime these days will be more of a challenge! Be prepared it won’t be cheap but worth done right will save you years of issues (y)
Thanks for all the comments!
I have taken off all plaster and it seems to be drying now, surprisingly fast...
I think that the plaster, the pre owners have put on as well as the paint, sealed the wall completely for like 40 years.
Or even years, that textured paint system would definitely prevent evaporation. However you need to establish the source of moisture before you can best deal with the problem. As stated above hack off existing and lime plaster or dry
line the wall.
Possibly decades, leave it off and save money by telling visitors " walls are drying out"