I was down in Cork at my parents’ house recently. The cistern in the upstairs bathroom has been delicate for a long time. Unless you put the handle at exactly the right angle, it continued filling indefinitely. When I went to the bathroom, I discovered that the arrangement no longer worked and to address the problem, pro tem, my brother had tied his belt around the ballcock and pulled it upwards by attaching his belt to the window catch. It worked but it was, frankly, sub-optimal.
Inevitably, I suppose, the day I was due to leave, while moving the belt to open the window, I managed to break the lid of the cistern. I apologised all round and ran out the door to get my train. I haven’t been back since and am afraid to ask whether cistern lids are a standard size or whether, even now, something special is being crafted for my parents in the armitage shanks workshop. Sigh.