Not Quite Groundhog Day – Things are Turning Green, 5th May 2016

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I’d never gone up to the site on two consecutive days before, but I was curious to see what was happening with the roof.  The removal of the old tiles had to be part of the renovation work but they’d looked fine to me.  However, when I turned into Tankerville on Thursday lunchtime, all became clear.  The roof was now very green!

Lo and behold, the roof had turned a wonderful shade of green.
Lo and behold, the roof had turned a glorious shade of green.

Although I couldn’t resist a wry smile, they were obviously renewing the felt underlay and working on only one section of roof at a time.  This made sense.  As I’ve said before, they really are ‘future-proofing’ the building and the existing felt would not only be old but perhaps also not up to present day technical standards.  From the ground, I couldn’t quite work out the wording on the green felt, but from Giuseppe’s Clerk of Works photographs taken that same day, I learned it was Roofshield, that it lies under the roof batons and is an air and vapour permeable, highly water-resistant roofing underlay.

Roof Shield

The old and new underlays visible on one section with an insulation layer below.
The old and new underlays with an insulation layer below.

However, other than the change in roof colour, you’d be forgiven for thinking this was a case of Groundhog Day (one of my favourite films) because, on the old build at least, everything happening was exactly the same as the day before.  The high pressure water jet was being used at virtually the exact same point as yesterday, the only difference being this time it was ‘Bob the Builder’ who was using it.

Tankerville Terrace 'Groundhog Day': exactly where things were yesterday.
Tankerville Terrace ‘Groundhog Day’: here we go again!
This time it's Bob's turn on the high pressure jet.
This time it’s Bob’s turn with the high pressure water jet.

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As we all know and the film’s tag-line tells us, ‘Life has a habit of repeating itself’ but further along the front wall there was at least something different happening.  Some repointing was being done.

Repointing work was underway on even this little wall too.
Repointing work was underway on even this little wall too.

On my way along to the new build site I could see to my left through a gap in the fence that the new north doorway was coming on well.

The brickwork around the new north doorway is coming on well. It will be an arch, like all the other old building doors, in this instance cleverly using one of the circular holes in the bin-store wall.
The frame around the new north doorway is coming on well. It will be arched, like all the other old building doors, here utilising one of the circular holes in the bin-store brickwork.

An obvious new addition to the new build site that day was a very large red crane.  From just inside the gateway, I couldn’t see what it was being used for but it was clear everyone was very busy and that something was being lifted onto the new build’s rooftop terrace.  Peter said it was the roof garden though I couldn’t quite visualise that.

The red crane is back on site again and winching things onto the roof.
The red crane is back on site again and is being used to winch something onto the roof.

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Thanks to Giuseppe.cam I can now show you what exactly was happening up on the roof that day.  Large metal planters were being put into place along the western edge of the terrace overlooking St Mary’s Court and in the next few days a watering system followed.

Metal planters now in place on the rooftop terrace.
Metal planters now in place on the rooftop terrace (G.cam).
A metal fence has been added with a little gateway since I was last up there.
A metal fence has been added with a little gateway set within it since I was last up there.
The metal planters - or should I say 'galvanised troughs'?
The metal planters. Sorry, galvanised troughs!

rooftop planter 1

I can inform you that the rooftop garden will flourish because it will be looked after by Green-tech irrigation, the  Mona Plant System.  I’m sure this will be a big weight off the Science Department’s mind!

These strange-looking things are plant waterers!
These strange-looking things water plants!

roof top planter 4

The roof terrace garden is going to be a fantastic feature of the NHSG new building.  I’m all for anything which brings more green onto the site and it will be very relaxing to sit in the sun up there. I found myself starting to feel really positive about the future.  Spring is my favourite time of year.  Having a May birthday probably helps.  It’s lovely to see nature returning to green in the bright Spring sun.  Giuseppe’s photos taken from the old building roof that day were really stunning.  Quoting ‘Groundhog Day’, “Am I right? Or am I right?”

Crane 1

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