by Jo Clarke, Marketing and Communications Officer
with thanks to Fiona Booth, Digital Engagement Officer and Willmott Dixon

The building has continued to move on at some pace during July. The concrete frame on the extension is all but complete with stair access and lift shafts. This means all parts of the extension are now accessible and site visits can view the construction from the roof.

The Box - 25 July 2018

Some members of staff were able to take a tour with our building contractors Willmott Dixon recently. Here are some images that one of my colleagues took.

July 2018 Site Visit - temporary roofs and permanent jobs

Some of our staff walking through the space that will become our Active Archive gallery.

July 2018 Site Visit - temporary roofs and permanent jobs

Staff standing in one of our first floor galleries.

July 2018 Site Visit - temporary roofs and permanent jobs

Members of staff at the recent site visit inspecting the progress on one of the storage spaces that are being created.

You may have seen from some of our social media posts that the temporary roof we’ve had over the old Central Library for the last year has been removed. While this has been in situ it’s enabled the old glass roofs to be removed and the non-listed part of the building to be demolished. It’s also kept a number of mahogany bookshelves and some beech panelling in a safe, dry and stable condition. A new steel and concrete frame has been built to support a new slate roof. This will be much more robust and much more practical to maintain in the future.

Now the temporary roof is off the scaffolding on North Hill will start to come down.

The installation of all the mechanical, electrical and plumbing services in the buildings including St Luke’s Church are also well underway.

Here’s an image taken when the temporary roof started coming off. You can clearly see the new slate roof on the old library building. To read more, see extra pictures and listen to a short interview with Willmott Dixon’s Construction Manager, Kristian Cartwright, take a look at this coverage in the Plymouth Herald.

New slate roof July 2018 - temporary roofs and permanent jobs

Here’s the most recent footage from the web cam too.

I also have a couple of personal stories from the construction site to highlight this month.

The first is about Dylan Gilbery, who recently led a site visit for the City Council’s Brexit, Infrastructure and Legislative Change Overview and Scrutiny Committee. The Committee were able to hear first-hand about the ambition for The Box and see the scale of it.

Dylan was looking for a career change last year. He was keen to join the construction industry, so he visited the Building Plymouth Job Shop on Mayflower Street. He was interviewed for the South West Shared apprentice scheme and offered an apprenticeship with Willmott Dixon.

As well as leading site tours his role also includes looking after the brick layers and carpentry works, ordering materials and inspecting plant deliveries.

Here are a couple of images showing him leading the Scrutiny Committee visit.

Scrutiny Panel Visit with Dylan - temporary roofs to permanent jobs

Scrutiny Panel Visit with Dylan7 - temporary roofs to permanent jobs

Here’s a shot from the roof taken by Councillor Pam Buchan during the visit. It gives you a really good idea of just how high the building now is!

Roof shot - 20 July 20 - temporary roofs to permanent jobs

Harry Machin Crop pictured with Steve Killer - temporary roofs and permanent jobsThe second story is about Harry Machin, a University student who attended a hard hat tour last year and was so impressed that he asked about opportunities on site during the holidays.

Willmott Dixon offered him some paid work experience. This led to Harry working with the Temporary Works sub-contractor as they put up the scaffolding and shored up the buildings. He’s now been taken on full time. Harry is pictured here (on the right) with Willmott Dixon’s Building Manager, Steve Killer.

Both these stories highlight the opportunities that The Box construction project is providing alongside our wider aspirations to create a game-changing heritage and cultural venue for local residents and visitors to enjoy.

See you next month with another #BuildUpdate!