Since the Charity opened in 2003, it has operated from an old, temporary, modular building which is unsuitable for our service users, staff and volunteers because of lack of classroom and administrative space, poor facilities and services, toilets behind thin partition walls and the fact that it is cold and damp in the winter. With a dynamic architect on board, and with new planning permission recently granted, the Trustees have been able to move forward with the construction of an energy efficient, timber-framed building and have already completed phase 1 of the project, which cost ¬£24,500, and which was to lay the foundations and footings. This was completed in October and November 2009.
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Registered Charity in England and Wales (1076055)
Now that phase 1 of the building project is completed, fund raising is now starting in earnest to raise ¬£56,000 for phase 2, which is for the timber framed building (¬£22,000), the cladding (¬£10,700), the roof (¬£13,900) and the windows (¬£9,400). This will provide us with a weathertight structure. We have so far raised ¬£10,800 towards the total needed for phase 2. To raise further funds all village residents have received a letter giving details of the ‚ÄòBuilding Fund Appeal‚Äô and asking for donations. We also have several fund raising events taking place over the coming months where the whole community can be involved in raising funds. We have also written to over 100 selected Charitable Trusts and Foundations seeking grants, recognising that only a small percentage of bids will be successful. There are no costs involved with raising funds for this project, apart from stationery and postage, as all work is carried out voluntarily. The new building, which will merge much better into the rural landscape, will provide proper teaching classrooms, providing our vulnerable clients and students with a much-improved learning environment. There will be enhanced administrative areas, and improved toilet facilities. There will be a room where service users, some of whom are disabled, can rest if they become overtired. There will be a full-sized kitchen, which gives the opportunity to start a ‚ÄúSkills for Working Life‚Äù course in catering for our service users, including our special needs students. There will be secure stores which will help prevent the theft of machinery from which we have previously suffered. The construction will be to building regulation standard with high insulation and low CO2 emissions. Solar energy is proposed and the building will have a controlled, zoned, heating system, further reducing the use of energy. Rainwater will be harvested to water butts and irrigation tanks for watering the gardens. A further benefit to the community is that an integral part of the design of the new building is a shop from where fruit and vegetables grown at the Centre will be sold. The sale of this produce is a valuable source of income to the Charity but currently it has to be sold from the local doctors‚Äô surgery and village hall, with little being sold from the Centre, as there are not the facilities available. There are now no shops left in the village and so this will provide a new local retail outlet for fruit and vegetables.
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