- Project Name: Bagworth Community Centre, Phase 2 Refurbishment
- Brief Description: Complete refurbishment of 104 year old building to include additional structural and drainage works, following major structural problems discovered during refurbishment.
- Contract value: £346,390.62* (Actual building costs higher due to additional structural and drainage works)
- Start date: May 2013
- Completion Date: April 2014
- More Detail: This project formed the basis of our application in the ProCon Awards 2014 – read the full application document here
Located at the heart of the Leicestershire village of Bagworth, the community centre dates back to 1910 and was originally funded by subscriptions from local mining families. It has been an integral part of village life for over a century.
In 2012 Bagworth and Thornton Parish Council commissioned Pick Everard to upgrade the whole centre, making an ambitious bid for BIG Lottery (Reaching Communities) funding for the project. This was achieved, making it one of the largest awards in the East Midlands, with Smallman & Son winning the construction contract. The project included: complete refurbishment of the original hall; a new meeting room; fully refitted, commercial kitchen; purpose-designed Parish Office; a dropin/break out ‘Hub’; toilets & storage facilities together with an extended, accessible, user-friendly entrance. Eco-features included photovoltaic roof tiles, low and zero carbon technologies where practicable and local sourcing of materials – resulting in an overall more sustainable facility.
The interior uses bright modern colours, quality fixtures and fittings, and in the main hall, original timber trusses create a feature reflecting buildings in the area. A chief objective was to ensure accessibility in accordance with the Equality Act 2012, helping address issues of isolation, evident in rural communities – ramps have been installed, together with visual contrast to handrails, doors and ironmongery, helping the visually impaired differentiate between areas in the centre.
During the refurbishment subsidence was discovered, with extensive damage to the walls, drainage system and subfloor slab. A reinforced concrete floor slab was laid, dowelled into the footings to external walls and strengthened by localised underpinning. The walls were locally rebuilt in areas of more extensive damage, with stitch repairs made to the cracking – a technique where Smallman & Son’s expertise was particularly fortuitous. The below ground drainage system was largely replaced to three sides of the original hall. The repair work was carried out towards the end of 2013 and the original contract work finally recommenced in January 2014.
Successfully handed over in April, the newly-formed Bagworth Community Centre Trust is now responsible for running the refurbished centre, which also includes a coffee shop, youth club, enhanced show/festival events, arts projects, healthy eating promotions and local history information – all helping to bring the community together in a welcoming and accessible central meeting place not available elsewhere in the village.
The project took place during one of the worst recessions the construction industry has ever experienced, so to be able to provide work for local contractors, tradespeople and other building professionals was a real achievement, this resulted in the creation of ten new jobs on site, including an apprentice. The scheme also reinvested a substantial amount in the local economy and the influx of workers had a positive impact on trade in and around the village. A win, win situation – against all the odds!