Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Masters House Newsletter

The Masters House now has it's own Newsletter! the aptly named - 'Masters House News'.

Please click this link to download a copy of the Spring EditionThe newsletter has been compiled by Jessica Worlock who has been appointed as the new Heritage and volunteering coordinator for the Masters House project. Employed by HCC part time for the next 3 years and funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund - Jessica will be offering the local community opportunities to get involved with the Master’s House project through volunteering, events and educational activities, and keeping you informed with newsletters, a webpage and  social media.

The first newsletter is a catch up of the history of the project and the recent 'topping out' and 'scaffold removal' but it also explains about the young men who have been inspired to become craftsmen of the future.

As part of the Master’s House restoration Speller Metcalfe have been able to offer some local young people a chance to be involved. Keiron  Smith and Adam Preece, students at John Masefield High School, have been gaining work experience onsite alongside mentors from the  Speller Metcalfe building team.

The yound men are studying a BTEC in Construction at Herefordshire and Ludlow College one day a week and then come to Master’s House one day each week to gain experience.
Keiron (pictured below left) first came to the Master’s House for a week of school work experience after a talk about careers at the school given by Matthew and Ed and has since come every week for six months.

Adam (pictured above right) showed dedication by  coming in every day of his half term holiday, he said the placement helped motivate him and gave him an idea of what life is like on a building site.

This level of commitment has not gone  unrewarded, both Adam and Keiron have been accepted to start full time places at the  college in September. Keiron said he now feels more motivated to achieve good results in
his Maths and English as he needs them for his college course.

Keiron and Adam’s college courses are being supported by Live and Learn, Herefordshire Council’s School Engagement Programme for 14-­16 year olds. The programme is funded by the European Social Fund.

In addition to the above placements SpellerMetcalfe has recently founded the Worcestershire Apprentice Academy. Following numerous work experience and apprenticeship placements with local education providers, Speller Metcalfe decided to form an independent charity aimed at encouraging Worcestershire school and college leavers into the construction trade. While career opportunities in the construction industry had dipped due to the recession, 2013 has seen positive changes and movement towards higher rates of employment and demand for trained, skilled professionals. Working together with Worcester College of Technology, the WCAA aims to increase the number of apprenticeship opportunities available locally, develop a highly skilled workforce, improve employer / apprenticeship links and boost job opportunities in Worcestershire.For those who employers who may be interested in supporting the scheme please e-mail or for parents/apprentices -

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

The Dinosaur that came to Town

'The Dinosaur that came to Town' is how the huge crane that came to site to remove the roof trusses that had carried the temporary roof for the last year was described by the Ledbury Reporter. (Click link for article)

Ledbury Reporter: GIANT: The crane on site

The roof trusses were removed quickly and the operation is remove the structure which had dwarfed the carpark and was clearly visible from many parts of the town was gone.

The scaffolding without its wrappings

A silhouetted roof truss at sunrise 

The remaining access scaffolding around the building was stripped over the course of the coming week and in half the time anticipated it was gone to reveal the which had been cocooned for so long.

The top end of the carpark is now open although as the structure was removed quicker than anticipated the blocks which have been weighing it down are still awaiting collection. They should be removed in the next couple of weeks.

Over the past few weeks the site has also been very busy with lots of visits from various organisations. The site entertained members of HAWCE (Herefordshire & Worcestershire Constructing Excellence) with Andy Tector formally Project Manager at Herefordshire County Council giving an introduction - followed by Ed whose passion and enthusiasm for old construction techniques was a delight to listen to. The evening was rounded off with sandwiches and few pints in the Prince of Wales.

Other visits both formal and informal take place on an almost daily basis and have included the ladies of Cradley WI, 20 members of the Worcestershire Society of Chartered Architects & the Friends of the Masters House.