by Jo Clarke, Marketing and Communications Officer
with thanks to Stacey Turner, Events and Audience Development Coordinator

I’m going to use this month’s Build Update to primarily focus on the work that’s being done to St Luke’s Church – pictured here from the roof of the old Museum and Art Gallery building.

View of St Luke's Church on The Box construction site taken from the roof of the former Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery

Beginning life in 1828 as a chapel of ease for Charles Church, and most recently used as an annexe for the Central Library, we are transforming St Luke’s into a distinctive, flexible space capable of hosting high profile exhibitions, installations and events.

We’re creating an extension on the side of the Church which will accommodate many of our deliveries and where we’ll undertake some of the preparation work we’ll need to do for these exhibitions and events. Work on the extension is really progressing and much of the blockwork is complete, as you can see from the image below. Our contractors are also in the process of adding mesh to the roof for security purposes.

Work continues on the extension to St Luke's Church at The Box, Plymouth construction site

Inside the Church scaffolding (or bird cage if you’re in the trade!) has been constructed. Our contractors are using this to remove the ceiling so the trusses can be strengthened and hanging points made. This will provide us with flexibility for a range of different exhibitions and installations. We’ll be able to suspend heavy pieces weighing up to ¾ of a tonne if we wish to! Here are a couple of images showing the scaffolding in situ.

Scaffolding inside St Luke's Church at The Box, Plymouth construction site - February 2018

Scaffolding inside St Luke's Church at The Box, Plymouth construction site - February 2018

Finally, the windows in the Church have been or are in the process of being removed for conservation. The windows were installed between 1887 and 1897 to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Golden and Diamond Jubilees. They act as memorials to individuals and families connected to the church with prominent motifs such as passion flowers, lilies and vines.

Detail of one of the windows in St Luke's Church at The Box, Plymouth

Elsewhere, as you can hopefully see from this recent web cam shot, good progress is also being made on the extension to the former Museum and Central Library building – what will become our ‘box in the sky’.

The Box, Plymouth web cam image from 26 February 2018

It’s been another hectic period for the project – and there’s plenty more hard work to come during 2018. I’ll round off this post with our latest video, which gives an overview of some of the key things that have happened between November and February.