‘It’s Windsday’: New and Old Buildings Progress on a Very Blustery Day, 6th April 2016

newcastle high school

‘The April winds are magical, and thrill our tuneful panes’ wrote Ralph Waldo Emmerson, American essayist, lecturer and transcendental poet.  I’m not sure what he meant by ‘tuneful panes’, but window panes were still the prevailing theme of the Old Build renovations on Wednesday April 6th.  However, only a keen eye would notice that the double-glazing has now been replaced across the frontage of the original Newcastle High School building, including roofline dormer windows, but has yet to reach the 1930s north extension.

The roofline dormer windows have now been replaced too.
The roofline dormer windows have now been replaced too.
Old and new windows: can you spot the 'join'?
Old and new windows: can you spot the ‘join’?

‘A mild spring zephyr’, to quote Owl in Winnie the Pooh, was certainly causing workers some problems high up on the New Build.  If you know the song,  sing along: ‘It looks like a rather blustery day today.’

Attaching insulation was proving problematic today.
Attaching sheets of insulation was proving problematic today.

As you know, tree protection fencing has been in place throughout the construction process and this has worked very well indeed.  One tree was lost at the back of the Sports Hall in December, however, but more will be planted there for screening purposes eventually.

The tree that was lost due to winds in December.
The tree lost due to winds back in December (Giuseppe.cam).

There was evidence on site today of trees being planted in other places too, which was really nice to see.  More green is always good.

A new tree has been planted on site recently.
A new tree has been planted on site recently.

Great progress has now been made with the New Build’s windows.  On the north side of the building, only a few still need to be fitted.

Only a few windows remain unfitted on the north side.
Only a few windows now remain unfitted on the north side.

The most impressive side of the building as far as windows are concerned, the west side, isn’t visible from Tankerville Terrace.  This wall of glass is now complete, bar the doors.  A brickie was at work there today finishing off a small wall, three bricks deep, at its base.

Brickie at work on the south side of the building.
Brickie at work on the new build’s south side.

The windowed west face of the new build (Giuseppe.cam).
The windowed west face of the new build (Giuseppe.cam).

Do you remember pictures I took inside the Main Hall a few months ago?  I told you that holes had been made for vents beneath the roof.

The holes created at the apex of the roof at both ends of the Hall.
The holes created at the apex of both ends of the Hall roof.

Well, as I left the site today, there was great excitement in Peter’s cabin.  A new delivery had just arrived and was now being opened.  A fascinated onlooker, I was as pleased as punch with myself when I correctly guessed what it was: the first of the Hall vents had arrived.

The new delivery is excitedly opened by Colin.
The new delivery to site is excitedly opened by Colin Gordon.
It is a ventilation panel for the Hall roof.
It’s the first of the special ventilation panels for the Hall roof.
And 'Phew!': yes, luckily it WILL fit the hole!
And ‘Phew!’: yes, luckily it is the right size & WILL fit the hole!

As I signed out and returned my safety kit at Wates’ Office in Westwood House, I popped into the back room to say ‘Hi’ to Conal who has previously guided me round the site.  Westwood used to be the Church High School of Music, you may remember, and this room once served as a staffroom.  Mr Noble certainly had a desk in here.

The back room on the First Floor of Westward House.
The back room (left) on the First Floor of Westward House.

It’s strange how you look at buildings differently in retrospect.  I had little need to be in this room while working at Church High and had certainly never looked out of its window.  How bizarre that a view of such an unattractive backyard could prove so fascinating to me now.

The back yard behind Westwood House from the First Floor.
The back yard behind Westwood House from the First Floor.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *