Marbury Lodge

The vision to construct a visitor shelter at Marbury developed some years ago, but there was no realistic chance of realising the vision until one of our members made a generous donation to cover the cost of the shelter itself. Following that generous offer, Marbury Ward Councillors Norman Wright, Malcolm Byram and Keith Wilson gave us part of their Community Grant money to put towards the cost of providing flooring under the shelter. Coupled with contributions from Cheshire West and Chester Council and FoAM itself, we had sufficient funds to give the go ahead to the project, which will be known as ‘Marbury Lodge’.

We carried out a survey of more than 200 individuals and groups who use the Park, which confirmed overwhelming support for our plans. We wanted the shelter to be large enough to house a class of school children, but also to be available for use by anyone visiting the Park. A key consideration was to build a shelter which would be sympathetic to the environment in the Park and also one which would utilise traditional construction techniques. The chosen concept of a rectangular, open-sided shelter, standing on a green oak frame, with a red western cedar shingle roof will fulfil those requirements. The visual appeal of the shelter will be enhanced by a feature King Post Truss on one side.

We were keen to use local contractors if possible and, following some setbacks with other potential contractors, decided to place an order with local craftsman Andy White of Greenwood Oak, Nantwich to supply the shelter. We developed a detailed design with Andy and applied for, and received, Planning Permission and Building Control Approval. We visited Andy a few weeks ago to view progress at his workshop, where the shelter was being made and parts of it were being trial-assembled. The green oak posts of the shelter will stand on natural sandstone staddles, which have been supplied by John Burton of J B Stone Masonry, Wrexham.

Back at Marbury, work on the foundations was completed by David Plumbley of Plumbley Environmental Contractors, Winsford. Andy delivered all the main parts from his workshop to Marbury and has completed construction of the shelter.  The frame and cedar shingle roof have received many admiring comments from visitors watching the work progress. The pavers have been installed beneath the shelter and the only remaining work is ‘landscaping’ the ground levels. Marbury Lodge will soon be available for use!

The pictures illustrate various stages of the project.

Alan Redley

Cutting the first sod

Preparing the foundations

King Post Truss for our Shelter

Ready for the shelter!

Putting up the posts

Taking shape

Rafters almost complete

Fixing sarking boards to the roof

Viewed from the Lime Avenues

Viewed from main entrance

The shelter construction is complete and the scaffold has been removed. The block pavers for the floor under the shelter have been laid and the shelter will soon be available for use.

Getting ready to turf

Marbury Lodge has been Completed

Work on construction has been completed and the ground around the shelter has been levelled and turfed.   An opening celebration was held on 7th December 2011 and the shelter is now available for use by visitors to the Park.

Alan Redley
Chair, Friends of Anderton and Marbury (FoAM)

Leave a Reply