A brand new purpose-built community centre has opened its doors in Redcar.
The Grenfell Club on Grant Street opened in March 2012 and has replaced a former club building that was no longer able to accommodate its members. The new £675,000 community centre boasts improved access for disabled visitors and exciting facilities such as a large multipurpose hall and a coffee bar.
Work began on the 12-month project in February 2011, with Willmott Dixon Construction as the main contractor and Plus 3 Architecture as the architect.
The two-storey Grenfell Club has been constructed on the site of a former town car park and is a timber frame construction with brick walls, rain screen cladding, aluminium powder coated windows and a single-ply roof. Comprising around 450 square metres of space, the building features an L-shaped design and faces a south-westerly direction.
On the ground floor, the club boasts a large multipurpose hall and coffee bar, multisensory rooms, offices, a kitchen and a toilet block. Additional facilities include a wet room with special hoists for wheelchair users.
In order to facilitate the physical activities taking place within the club, vinyl flooring has been installed throughout the ground floor. The front doors of the main hall also open up onto the garden, offering the opportunity of outdoor activities in the summer.
Club members will notice a clear distinction between the recreational use of the ground floor and the educational purpose of the first floor. The first floor is fully carpeted and features an additional hall, a games room and WC facilities along with storage space, a meeting room and an office.
One of the key reasons for constructing the new club was to make the facilities more accessible for disabled members. As a result, a glass platform lift was installed to offer access to both floors. Special hold-open devices have also been fitted to the doors in order to ensure that they can be kept open with ease.
At the front of the club is an onsite garden that is surrounded by block paving and a fence. Planting has been kept to a minimum so that the garden is a blank canvas for club members to shape as they see fit.
Plus 3 Architecture Architect, Matthew Glen, said:
“We visited the original club during the early consultation period of this project and were quite surprised to see how popular it was with local residents. However as the building was constructed in the 1970s it was no longer able to meet the requirements of its members.
“The new Grenfell Club is a world apart from the previous building and has been designed to provide the best possible facilities for members. This includes a more flexible approach to the usage so that different areas can be opened up and then rented out to generate additional income for the club.
“We’ve really enjoyed being involved with this project and now that the club is open it will make a huge difference for the community of Redcar. The building is even being put forward for the RIBA regional awards.”
Now that the project is complete, the former Grenfell Club building has closed and will be demolished.
An official opening ceremony for the new club will take place in April 2012.