After a fire destroyed its offices 12 years ago, a charitable trust is now celebrating a milestone in the construction its new heritage centre.
A special green oak timber frame at the site in London Road, Hemel Hempstead, is a major stepping-stone in the construction of the Box Moor Trust’s new centre.
In 2000, the trust’s Old Barn situated in its Boxmoor site burned to the ground.
Planning and discussions had been underway for several years, with initial applications of the site submitted as early as 2006.
Work began on the building, costing £1.4 million, this summer and is on track to be completed in spring.
General manager Ian Richardson said: “It’s a very exciting time for us and I’m very much looking forward to the building being completed.
“It will house an office for trust staff, a boardroom for the trustees and meeting areas to be used by educational groups or for trust meetings.
“The greenoak frame will be entirely visible from the inside and hot water will be supplied by a boiler heated by a log burner.”
The contact for building work was put out to commercial tender and most of the work was awarded to Apsley-based firm GS Walker Ltd.
Mayor of Dacorum Bert Chapman said: “I think ‘ fantastic. It’s what our heritage is all about and it’s absolutely brilliant for our community.”
The frame is designed to fit in with the local style of agricultural buildings of the past, and will be clad in black timber to match surrounding buildings.
The long planning process has allowed the trust to fund the work entirely from its saved funds.