Bleachingfields Community Centre gets ready to shine

The state-of-the-art Bleachingfields Community Centre will provide exciting new facilities for the Dunbar area when it opens in March 2012.

The innovative project has seen the demolition of the Countess Youth and Community Centre, which was established in 1982. To celebrate the end of an era, former members, youth leaders and parents took part in a celebration ceremony in October 2011. A memories book has also been created, which will allow people to write comments about what the community has meant to them over the years.

Freda Kelly, youth leader and secretary of the centre’s management committee, said: “The fundraising we all do will now go towards the children who come here rather than upkeeping the fabric of the building.”

Main contractors McLaughlin & Harvey are carrying out the £4m project for East Lothian Council, who also designed the scheme.

The single-storey centre includes a new public library, a large community area, public toilets, meeting rooms and office space for East Lothian Council. In addition, there will be a sports hall in the centre with male and female changing rooms and spaces for the After School Club, Playgroup, Youth Group and Dunbar Scouts.

Works so far have included the installation of the roof and windows, whilst progress is now underway with the finishing plasterboard and painting.

Although the large timber-frame construction has not been built to any specific BREEAM standards, it has incorporated several sustainable features, such as photovoltaic cells on the roof.

David Ferguson, McLaughlin & Harvey, said: “The shape of the building itself is extremely interesting. The centre features a glass roof, whilst the south elevation is an S-shape.

“Excellent progress has been made so far and we have not encountered any difficulties, with the exception of bad weather. Everyone is very pleased with what we have managed to achieve.”

McLaughlin & Harvey

Over the last 150 years, McLaughlin & Harvey has acquired a reputation for high quality building and civil engineering construction. The solutions based company works collaboratively with clients and the design team to ensure the project objectives are delivered.

McLaughlin & Harvey are committed to delivering quality, cost effective solutions within a safe, considerate working environment.

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