You, our readers will have seen the progress of the Community Shed over the past weeks. It is looking amazing and achieving the vision and intentions for a broad range of Community uses that we have sought so long to deliver. The quality of the work by AJC and the numerous contractors is first class and bodes well for the longevity of the building.
Here are some of the internal details of progress that has occurred over the past few weeks and where we are going next.
The fire alarm system is installed, commissioned and the whole building will be subject to an independent Fire Risk Assessment on the 17th December. The air source heating system is installed and commissioned with power during the daytime fed largely from the 12KW solar panel array on the roof of the building. This makes for very efficient energy usage and minimises significantly power drawn from the main power grid. Heat retention of the building is excellent, reflecting the high degree of hi-tech insulation. The heating units can be operated remotely via an app and provide virtually instant heat. Also installed are CCTV and intruder alarm systems, both capable of being remotely monitored and operated, providing essential security of the building. These systems are enabled via a wireless router which provides Wi-Fi throughout the building. This will in future also give us a phone line using VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol), as a conventional land line would have proven difficult and expensive. The installation of these systems has been finished off by a total decoration of the interior spaces, the colour choices of which were guided by an offer from a colour consultant offering her services ensuring that the colour scheme is sympathetic to those with visual impairments.
With regard to the workshop, the block walls were painted some time ago and presently volunteers are sealing the floor ready for the progressive installation of workshop tools, woodwork, metal work and general hobby spaces. This will commence the beginning of January, with the first task being to build work benches. Tools are still being sought, so please contact us if you have donations and we will come and take a look.
In January we will start to fit out the upper floor with tables, chairs and the like and the kitchen units are planned to be installed. Completing furnishings will take some time and need to meet fire retardant regulations and be easy to clean due to Covid hygiene requirements, probably out largest headache challenging us on how we operate with the present understandable and necessary constraints. The message from us is to be patient and help where you can please.
With regards to “opening the doors” for use by various groups of which the Men’s Shed is one, this will be progressive as circumstances and completion allows. We currently foresee some use in February, completing the workshop and if circumstances allow, access for a few groups with restrictions, to use the upper floor, but currently there is no clear picture as to how and when. Meantime we have started to invite certain groups to come and take a look and have a chat on potential usage needs and will expand this with time. Groups wanting to use the facility should where applicable be monitoring the national guidance for their activity if appropriate and considering their risk assessments which will be required for some time to come.
To enquire, please see the contact details at the end of this update and on our new Community Shed Facebook page. In the near term the temporary Community Shed web site will be replaced by the full version and will contain more information of what the building will provide, terms and conditions and the inquiry for use application form.
For those not already familiar with the layout of the Community Shed these are the main areas. The lower floor is an open workshop space that will cater for woodworking, metal work and craft type activities with work benches allowing flexibility for a number of uses. The upper floor provides a separate Arts and Crafts space adaptable to other uses too with adjoining limited storage space, a substantial fully fitted demonstration Kitchen, Office space for two to three desks which will be the administration hub and for IT training with Wi-Fi connectivity for the whole building, two Toilet spaces, one with nappy changing provision and a Social seating/relax area incorporating dining/meeting table section adjacent to the kitchen area. This Social Area can also be used for talks, presentations and other activities requiring audio visual (AV) equipment. A hearing loop enables people with hearing aids to hook in. The access to the building is disabled access friendly and the south facing windows provide plenty of natural light – well most of the year that is.
The most important part. The Trustees and Operations group wish you; your families, loved ones and friends a happy, safe and healthy festive season and all you may wish for in 2021. Stay in touch and thank you for all your support and the generosity of our community, funders and contractors, you know who you are, for getting us to where we are today.
Main contacts and of course our Facebook pages.
For the Aboyne and Mid Deeside Community Shed, Search Aboyne Community Shed or Aboynecs.org
For Aboyne and District Men’s Shed search aboynemensshed.org.uk