Bristol CC Outdoor Education Centre situated in the village of Parkend in The Forest of Dean

Monday 10 September 2012

Classroom Redevelopment Part 1

For the past 40 years our classroom buildings have provided a place for our groups to be briefed, do work in the evenings such as diary writing etc. and house our Field Study Laboratory with microscopes as part of our Stream Study Exercise. For day visit groups they provide a base for welcome briefings, leaving bags, changing clothing, eating lunch etc. They are also regularly used by other groups for a variety of activities varying from first aid courses to meeting rooms for corporate development groups or even a toddler group.

BUT, let's face it they were getting a bit tired looking! In fact if we are honest they were a bit like stepping into a draughty old mobile classroom from the 1950's! Except they predate that even by a few years. They weren't our biggest selling point but just about did the job. Fortunately as our courses are mostly outdoor-based and our visitors have such a great time in so many other ways they forgave us for what we lacked in the way of suitable indoor learning environments.

The classrooms were beyond economic repair and maintenance and for the last few years we have done very little to them. However we knew we needed to do something so in August this year we demolished them!

This wasn't as straightforward as hoped as they contained asbestos that needed specialist removal - see photos below:

The rest of the buildings came down fairly easily!

We are now left with a big empty area where the classrooms once stood.

In the coming weeks this area will be filled by a new purpose built classroom building that will be suitable to meet our needs into the future.

We will keep you up-to-date with progress through photos on this blog over the next few weeks.

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