CMI received the honour of being appointed by Astra Community Projects for a compelling new build scheme, aimed at replacing the historic Bow Brickhill Church Hall dating back to 1898, situated southeast of Milton Keynes. The decision to embark on an entirely new structure stemmed from the imperative to meet the escalating demands of a thriving community and address structural challenges in the existing building before it reached an unsafe state. Driven by the client's vision, our task was to bring to life a new facility with a heritage-inspired ambiance. The envisioned structure included a main hall, an independent meeting room, essential amenities like toilets, a below-ground maintenance room for heating systems, and additional under croft storage to meet the diverse needs of the community.
About the Project
The project demanded the creation of external spaces that not only housed a secure children's play area but also incorporated elements of cover and a natural environment conducive to both play and education. A paramount challenge was to establish a secure environment during nursery hours, ensuring that vulnerable user groups could operate safely while preventing unauthorised access. Beyond these foundational elements, the envisioned scheme goes beyond serving the primary function of a nursery. It is poised to offer versatile facilities with the capacity to host a myriad of private and corporate functions, including wedding receptions, interviews, business clinics, computer services, catering events, and social gatherings. The proposed design also includes state-of-the-art IT systems, enhancing the utilization of the building's presentation facilities. To minimise the impact on end users, SIPS panels were judiciously selected as the preferred construction system. The construction timeline is strategically planned to coincide with the summer holidays, ensuring minimal disruption to the nursery's operations during the build phase.
A detailed view
In our 7-year journey, Bow Brickhill initially doubted the possibility of constructing an affordable, quality multi-use facility that complements the historic vernacular. However, in Spring 2021, ASTRA Community Projects exceeded early ambitions, delivering a beautifully crafted, affordable mini-masterpiece. The collaborative effort is now hailed as a triumph of vision, determination, generosity, and community-professional synergy, resulting in something truly special.
Alan Preen - Chair of the delivery vehicle “Astra Community Projects” and Project Manager
Awards & honours
Shortlisted for ’International Offsite Project of the Year’ – Off Site Awards 2021