We have been able to make a start on our long-awaited improvements to the Studio. The main purpose of this phase is to eliminate the need for steps to access the entire Studio space and also to add an accessible WC on the end. The builder is working with us to carry out the works around our use of the workroom, so don’t worry, Studio-based courses are still able to go ahead!
We will be relocating the sink in the Studio and sorting out some more flexible storage shelving which should help those who have courses there enormously. A larger High definition TV screen is also getting installed since we are finding that demos captured by our clever little camera (called ELMO!) seem to be a popular option.
Outside, the stone sets that have been pulled up to make way for the exterior foundations are going to be re-used in the space left after we re-located the oil tank a few months ago. You may have noticed that the Courtyard itself is not level, and poses a challenge, not just for what goes above, but also for all the network of pipework under the ground. This pipework is what provides the opportunity for drainage from the sinks and loos for the main building, so it is important that we get it right.
Incidentally, the complexity of the pipework, plus the fact that eventually everything gets sent down to a septic tank near the main gate, explains why we have signs up on the loos asking people not to throw anything but toilet tissue down the facilities. If people knew the damage that carelessness with plumbing causes, and realised the expense of sorting out problems, they’d think again. Luckily the majority of Highamites treat out plumbing with respect and we are always grateful for that.
This is just the first phase of several we will be enacting over the next couple of years, which, once completed, will enable all people to have level access from the main building through to the spaces off the Courtyard: The Studio, Harness Room, Cedar Room and, importantly, the Bar. The addition of the loo to the Studio alone will be a relief (literally) to our crafty crowd especially. Along the way, we shall also significantly improve our existing main loos.
We are glad to have made a start after all the delays and we look forward to Highamites benefiting from the improvements which will help make Higham a nicer place for everybody who is good enough to come.