This is the place where you can find out about – and keep up to date with – the latest information regarding the progress toward a new Hall.
Update: 29 November 2023
We’re now finished with the ground works at the septic tank. The outflow went through the neighbouring garden and was clogged with roots. We’ve now put new sewer pipe into the ground and cleared the tank. Not the most fun of jobs in the freezing cold but it needed doing.
We also have new internal switching so the lights can be operated easier on entering the building. There’s also an electric socket outside for the Xmas lights. We’ve done as much paving as we can do for now. It’ll be finished when the railings go in and it warms up. Ventilation and external lights next. A busy fortnight!
Update: 22 November 2023
Thanks to all of you who chose the Hall as your fund of choice in the Co-Op loyalty scheme. It has helped us raise £1055.89. Marc Day went along to accept the donation, with thanks to Michael (the store manager of Dufftown) and his colleagues.
We’ll use part of this donation to help insulate the new part of the building. We’ll also buy fruit trees for an orchard on the newly drained green space. They will be planted by the children of Glass School next year and they can be harvested by the community when they bear fruit in a few years. If we don’t use the fruit we’ll see nature benefit from an extra winter food source.
Thank you also to Fiona, Lorna Yuill’s sister, who has made some fantastic bunting to decorate The Hall with, an example is below.
If you would like to see the Hall upgrade benefactors then look out for the wall plaque in the entrance. They are a mix of community members, private, public & charitable organisations from our region and across the UK.
Update: 14 November 2023
We’re now finished with the main door – plastered, painted, tidy, water and wind proof. Just a door closer to add, with a bit of delay from our contractor to fit it.
The outside is changing around the main entry door with 50 tonnes of aggregate from Avochie quarry at Rothiemay to get the levels right. We’re just about to render the sides of the ramp, then it is set for railings to be attached. After this the finishing layer of aggregate will be laid. In the meantime temporary “railings” made from the pallets we’ve had left on site are in place. Safe but utilitarian. The slabs laid from the front to back are coming along. In the next few weeks they’ll wrap right around the main door side of the hall so users who need a level surface (wheelchairs, perambulators, mobility scooters, those less steady on their feet) will access the main doors and back from the two accessible parking spots at the road side of the building. This work is kindly supported by Edintore Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund and Clashindarroch Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund.
Our kitchen design is now finalised. It comprises new units and worktops with a cooker, fridge and dishwasher suitable for catering. The current kitchen stops some events from happening so the new facility is overdue. It will also have a height adjustable work surface so children of all heights from Glass School can participate in cookery lessons. The young people are also now using the Hall again for PE, and they start gymnastics lessons in the Main Hall shortly.
Next up is some final electrical work and a new fire detection system for the building. More to go, but we’re getting there. You can now see a real difference, and feel it too (nice and cosy warm inside the Hall).
Update: 31 October 2023
We’ve now got a new main entry door and sidelight, with the double glazing and tight fit keeping the cold out of the hallway. The old doors were very leaky and couldn’t be opened from the outside. We will need to do a bit of re-decoration around the inside so it matches up with the paintwork but this is just cosmetic. The new door will be an emergency exit only for the time being until we can get the railings installed on the new ramp. This is taking a while as we’re deciding what to do – galvanise them, paint them or both. We’re waiting for prices. Once the railings are in the new door will be the main keyed entry and exit to the building. The “beloved” kitchen door will be de-commissioned and blocked up. The floor joists in the kitchen near the door are also knackered so we’ll need to splice them and make this part of the building good for the long term.
The next job is to lay concrete slabs from the front to the back of the hall for full accessibility, then it will be on the final lap of the track for electrics and ventilation.
Update: 17 October 2023
We’re scheduled to have the new main entry door installed in a week’s time. This will let more light into the entry corridor, it will eventually be the principal entrance to the building, and will be a better fit so less heat is leaked. It also has an auto closing mechanism so noise can be contained in the Hall.
The entry ramp to the Hall is nearly there – just a coat of render to go on next week. Why so big, some people ask? It’s built to strict regulations and they dictate its form. There are railings to go on the ramp and we’ll get them made when it is measured. There’s some paving around the building and groundworks but this bit of the project is finished more or less. Two accessible parking spaces will be created at the front of the Hall when paving is down.
We’re also finalising the plan for the new kitchen. Glass School want to use the space for cooking lessons so we need figure out how the different users of the space can be accommodated. It will be double the size of the existing kitchen and kitted out to meet the needs of larger events like Hogmanay & Burns Night which currently happen but with a lot of hassle attached.
The grass & wildflower mix has started to sprout in the car park but we need it to be stronger before the car park is ready for full use. Just a reminder: it’s the car park for both the Hall and Kirk. The kirk doesn’t have the space for a big car park so when it has events such as weddings, guests can park at the Hall and get transported to the Kirk. Finally, if you’re a moonlight recycler you’ll notice the motion sensitive light is now active to illuminate your glass depositing.
Update : 25 September 2023
As you’ll see we have been working hard to complete the car park, its lighting and a new recycling bin store. This work is now complete, so many thanks to the erstwhile group of people who’ve got on with it to complete the job. It looks a bit messy at the moment but after the soil has settled into the hexagonal ground reinforcement it’ll look lovely.
The Scottish-sourced seed we’ve sown is a mix of 70% low growing wild flowers and 30% tough grass seed. It’ll take a while to germinate and we’ll ask you to use the existing parking around the Hall for the time being. We’ll plant some more hedging in the winter and a small orchard of fruit trees for the community to harvest. Sonsi Reeve has kindly donated a range of hand harvested local wildflower seed from her garden and this has also been sown on the margins of the car park. It should look blooming lovely in the spring!
The next job is completing the ramp, installing three phase electric and ventilation to the WCs.
Update: 7 September 2023
We’re now well along with the car park – a 900m square hard surfaced space which will become a low growing wild flower and grass ‘field’. It can also cope with a HGV lorry driving over it whilst at the same time being flat enough to double up as a football pitch. This will be lit during use, and the recycling bins will be shifted over to this side too with a motion sensor light to illuminate the bin area. The car park has been a massive load of work (500 tons of earth & clay shifted alone!!), and the people you’ve seen grafting deserve a wave and vote of thanks. In the hot weather they like ice creams at piece time, in cold weather cakes and biscuits!
The accessible ramp to the building is well under way, and should be done in the next week or so. It’ll have railings and lead to a new entry door which will be much better fitting and keep the cold out of the entrance/existing toilet access area.
The next job is installing new ventilation to the toilets & main hall, and three phase installation of electric so our new heating system won’t overload our connection to the grid. It means knocking off the lekky for half a day so houses within the vicinity have been sent a letter from SSEN. It makes possible, if we want, to have a rapid car charger at the Hall (albeit this isn’t in the plan at the minute). We’ll also get a new fire system so we meet modern regulations for a connected detection system.
Keep coming to events folks, look at progress, and tell us what you think.
Update : 15 July 2023
There’s been a lot of activity at the Hall just lately. Here’s a round-up. We now have Internet, thanks to Rob Yuill.
The Hall floor needed an extra coat of varnish after the first two settled. In total 75 litres of varnish have been used, but it is now fully finished. Hundreds of litres of paint and the exemplary patience of our contractor (Mark Smith) have made all the difference.
The heating in the existing building is now (nearly!) finished in the Main Hall and toilets. The toilet heating is automated, switching itself on when you enter. The lights are the same. They’ll automatically go off after a set time, helping to save electric.
The bulk fill of the car park base is finished and settling before we install kerbs, lighting and drainage. The final finish on the car park – very hard wearing hexagonal mesh made from recycled plastic will be laid at the end. A bit more perimeter hedging will be planted in the winter, and new goals for the kids (and adults!) to play football can be installed.
We’ve had an issue with the back wall where new double French doors and a fan light will be installed in the meeting room. The wall needs a partial re-built and we have a nesting bird who will be left undisturbed until the chicks fledge.
Next up is further work outside, an install of three phase electric, new fire detection systems, and then the extension.
Update: 22 May 2023
We’re now well underway to re-open the Hall shortly. We’ve had to do some major surgery to the electrics, as the heating installation required more work than we envisaged. The painter will then be able to finish the floor, and it needs to harden before we can walk on it.
The gents and ladies are now looking palatial, more than suitable for many thrones. And outside you can see our super painters have been working hard to brighten up the gable end. We’ve had a good lot of volunteer help – thanks to Sarah, John, Lorna, Debbie, Cheryl, Tom, Fiona, Andrew + his grandchildren, Margo & the ladies of the WI.
After this lot of work we’ll re-build the front entrance, get some new doors installed and build the car park.
Update: 8 April 2023
Work is well underway given the better weather. The gents is almost there, with some finishing to do. The ladies required some serious surgery with the gable end needing to be re built and an internal wall with ceiling in the end cubicle getting gutted and sorted out. The ladies is mostly done albeit decor needing a finish. The toilets will shortly have heat, whilst the main hall heaters are ready to install. We’ll also have new LED lights too. We’re now also five windows lighter, removed from the toilets and a big tidy up of the decor. Lots of work done. More to do!
Update: 4 January 2023
Glass Hall renovation: 14th/15th January 2023. (9am to 5pm)
We’ve kindly received funding to insulate the roof spaces of Glass Hall. It’s essential we do this to push down the electric bill which gives less of a need to fund raise for avoidable costs & enables lower cost events. It’s also good for carbon reducing the building’s footprint.
We need a small group of volunteers (5 or so) to help pass materials to those who will complete the work. You won’t be going into the loft, albeit you’ll need to be able to lift and move loft insulation bales. We’ll supply gloves, a dust mask and (if needed) a disposable overall.
Please respond to firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re able to help out on either day, for any length of time. Cups of tea are promised!
Thanks you to the funders for this work: The Scottish Government CARES Scheme, Cairnie Glass Community Trust, RES/Glens of Foudland Wind Farm Benefit Fund, Vattenfall/Clashindarroch Wind Farm Benefit Fund
Update: 30 November 2022
We have just had great news – we’ve now been funded to insulate the lofts of the Hall, and install a solar array & batteries on the new extension when it’s built. This matches funding from Edintore Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund, Glens of Foudland Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund and Cairnie Glass Community Trust. This new grant is worth over 30k. As this was a rather construction/technical bid Marc Day completed the 13 page form and obtained relevant quotes. Thanks to Ruta Burbaite and Natalya Hendricks at Local Energy Scotland via the CARES scheme (the Scottish Government’s Community and Renewable Energy Scheme).
We’ll begin works to insulate the lofts shortly (in January) and we’ll issue a call for volunteer help. Don’t be shy! Once this is done we’ll head under the floors and hopefully emerge with a warmer insulation layer installed such that it can withstand our dashing white sergeants.
Separately the gable end works start next week, with a gross assumption of clemency from the winter weather.
Update: 28 November 2022
It was a good dry morning to start planting in our green space. We had all the pupils from Glass School (including the nursery) come down the road and do the work. There were so many of us that the picture had to be taken twice to show the panorama. Our young community members did a brilliant job – armed with trowels from home – getting 540 daffodil bulbs planted in 25 minutes! They were ably assisted by committee members Andrew, Frances, Margo and Marc along with the kind help of the teaching staff at the school. Funding for this was provided by the National Lottery. This is just the start of planting – we’ll do more when the car park is down. The school’s next outdoor job will be hedge planting, but this will be in spring when our saplings from the Woodland Trust arrive in March.
The double doors to the Main Hall are now glazed with clear laminated safety glass. These doors will also need modifying to meet building regulations, and this is next on the jobs list. Did you also notice the windows in the main hall and kitchen?
Next week sees the beginning of works to the gable end & toilets so we can get this water tight. And the decorator will begin his work in the Main Hall.
Update: 22 November 2022
Many thanks to the immediate neighbours and community for your patience when we installed access to our green space & underground piping. This stage is complete. Thanks to our funders for supporting this aspect of the work (Vattenfall Clashindarroch Community Benefit Fund; EDF Dorenell Community Benefit Fund; REAP Edintore Community Benefit Fund). Thanks also to our contractor who did a good job. The next step – laying the car park surface, drainage & lighting – will be done when we get suitable weather.
You’ll also notice new views from the main hall & kitchen windows – they have new energy efficient glazing. The views are beautiful, and the Hall / Kitchen are much lighter. Many thanks to Aberdeenshire Council’s Community Led Vision Fund for their help with this work. Our contractor did the work in one day and the job was very neat. The old glass will be recycled.
We’ve had to slow down on gable end remedial works due to high occupancy of the Hall. We’ve had many weekend events and there are weekly users at the Hall each Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday & Friday. We’ll get going on this work when we’re a bit quieter – the contractor is standing by.
Tree work will be undertaken on 24 November as we need to remove some dead and decaying specimens. We’ll auction off the wood and chippings for the benefit of Hall funds, and the bulk timber will be slabbed & dried for indoor joinery. Many thanks to the REAP Edintore Community Benefit Fund for funding this.
Decorating the Main Hall – our work party chose Dulux nutmeg white for the ceiling and Dulux mint macaroon for the walls. Many thanks to Aberdeenshire Council’s Community Led Vision Fund for supporting this work. Our contractor kindly agreed to work around Hall users, albeit our bowlers, badminton players, netballers, Glass School and the parent toddler group have been inconvenienced for one week in January so the floor can be re-finished. Decorating starts in December.
Update: 31 October 2022
We’ve just been updated by Aberdeenshire Council (their Vision Fund) that our bid for decorating the Main Hall and installing new energy efficient low ’e’ glass has been successful. That’s a great help. Blinds for the Main Hall have also been funded – a request of SeeThru Productions (our Drama group) so outside light can be blocked out during matinée performances. It also means we leak less light into the neighbourhood when the Hall is in use at night.
Instead of the obscured glass in the main hall & kitchen we’ll be able to see the lovely views with new (conventional) transparent glazing. Hopefully the electric lights will be used less, and with the roof insulation we make the Hall less carbon intensive to operate. We bounce back the heat from the glass rather than let it disappear out the Hall. Put simply: less electric to pay for, more funds for fun & useful stuff! We’ll now get on with the work, carefully navigating around Hall bookings, so you’ll see the difference shortly.
27 October 2022 – Update
Our contractor will install the asphalt entrance and exit to the green space next week, along with installing a duct for electric cables and drainage of the car park surface under the road. Kerb edging will also be installed. There will be road closure in place, albeit this will not stop nearby residents from accessing their properties. A local diversion will ensure the safety of the site & workers.
The work should take two weeks, weather depending. Installing the entrances & exits will not impact the size and use of the existing car park at the Hall.
Once the entrances and exits are installed we can then get on with installing the car park surface, moving the recycling, adding drainage, laying cabling, lighting the car park area and spreading wildflower/grass seed. In March 2023 we finish the job by planting hedging & four oak trees (per the conditions attached to the planning permission).
Update: 24th October 2022
We’ve just been told that Glass Hall has been selected the CO-OP to be a local funding recipient.
We’ll use this money to reduce the carbon footprint of the Hall and improve our green space. If you’re already a CO-OP member then you can choose us as a cause by logging to your account online or via the CO-OP app. If you’re not a member then it’s really easy to do so: either by downloading the app or via their website: www.coop.co.uk. Once you’ve chosen us as a cause a proportion of your shopping spend in any of their stores is donated by CO-OP to us.
The more people that choose us, the better we can get our carbon footprint lower, the more we can help wildlife in our locality.
See our cause page, sign up for membership and choose us as a cause here:
Update: 18th October 2022
We have just been contacted by the Woodland Trust and they are kindly providing the hedging for the community space. We committed, in our planning application, to increase the amount of hedging around the perimeter and to soften landscape views of the car park from Market Hill. Pupils and staff from Glass School will give a helping hand with planting, and we’ve also got bulbs to get in the ground. The latter are kindly sponsored by the National Lottery, who will also pay for the wildflower & grass mix to be put around and on the 900m square car park surface. That’s a lot of seed! Bulb planting happens in a month or so (weather depending) and our new hedge saplings arrive in March 2023. They get protected with spiral guards and canes. There’ll be literally thousands more flowers and hundreds of hedge plants to give shelter for birds, mammals, insects & amphibians.
Road closure for constructing the car park opening & installing electric cables to light it will start at the end of November. It should take no more than two weeks, and then we can get on with laying the surface.
But first to come is the work to the toilets/entrance lobby end of the main building (walls, roof, windows). This will go ahead in the next few weeks, albeit we have a busy schedule of work around. And we have to take special care of our bat under the guidance of Rachael, our licensed bat worker.
Update: 20th September 2022
We now have our building warrant. This means we can start re-development, and it is being done in stages. Next spring is the best time for building work on the extension, and following this we can re-develop the meeting room & kitchen. In October we will address the damp roof, construct the car park, and create a new outdoor green space outside the Hall. We have already fundraised for this work.
A drawing is on display at the Hall to show you what is planned.
Update: 13th September 2022
Aberdeenshire Council have granted in full planning permission for the re-development of Glass Hall. We will be granted the building warrant soon. We will replace the frosted glass in the main hall with clear windows so we can get more light into the space. The main hall will be re-decorated, including sanding & re-sealing the floor. The new extension will be built next year, to avoid the bad weather and reduce disruption. The extension hosts solar PV panels which will generate 40% of our electric consumption, with new LED electric lighting, roof, floor & wall insulation reducing the utilities bill. There is an outside patio and green space accessible from the new extension. The meeting room will be enlarged & made comfy whilst the kitchen will be re-positioned & enlarged. The car park build is planned for Autumn with a short period of road closure being necessary. The gable end & roof of the entrance / current toilets will also be made watertight. Contractors for the above works have, or are being procured.
Funding for the next steps is from a number of sources, and work to finalise the budgets & bids is now possible with planning consent. We have a busy period ahead of us, but we’ll see positive changes very shortly.
You can see the approved drawings here:
Update: 15th August 2022
Public comments on the planning application are now closed, and we will now work with the Architect & Council to consider the responses received. The building warrant application is submitted. Two dead trees in the front of the hall have been felled, which was agreed on the previous planning application in 2019. The wood will be planked by Drummuir Sawmill, and when dry we’ll use the sycamore for decorative joinery inside the hall. Three more trees (all sycamore) need to come down, as they are either dying or the root growth is towards the septic tank. This wood will also be used for decorative joinery. We’ll auction off the remainder we can’t re-use for firewood, with proceeds going to pay for the tree surgery bill. More trees will be planted to make up for felling, adding to the 40 already planted. The National Lottery has kindly funded the tree planting & hedging.
The next practical step will be to start the repair of the outside gable ends to the toilets & roof area. This work is kindly sponsored by Carnie Glass Community Trust (Engie) and Clashindarroch Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund (Vattenfall). It will make the existing toilets water and wind tight, so they can be made more visually appealing in the interim with new decor. It also means the plaster can be stabilised when we come to re-develop this area.
Finally, we have one Hall resident we must take special care of – a soprano pipistrelle bat. We have agreed a plan with Nature Scot to avoid disturbance and just in case more free lodgers arrive we’ll provide new first class accommodation in concrete bat boxes to mitigate the loss of roof access.
Update: 14th July 2022
Planning Application: Our Next Step
We received notification today that our planning application is valid for re-developing the Hall. It will now go through the standard planning process. Regardless of the scale of changes all public buildings must apply for planning permission, there is no ‘permitted development’.
The feedback obtained from the community and the hard work of the committee has prepared feasible plans with the funding we can obtain. We recycled as much of the new hall plans as we could. We have also kept an eye on the future to encourage wider use of a flexible facility.
The community consultation specified a list of requirements for the committee to action. A 24 hour accessible WC, presentable internal décor, a size of facility easy to fundraise for, a safe outside space for younger people to use when at the Hall, an effective heating system, more storage, a meeting space independent of the main hall, levelling the main hall floor, and a more usable kitchen space. We’ve managed to achieve all these requests in the new design. But, compromises are unavoidable. Our new kitchen is tighter in size than the new build plans, and we are still considering how best to completely insulate the building (not just the loft, for which we have funding). There are less visible requirements to meet too: a set number of parking spaces mandated by the Council, a new sewage treatment unit to replace the old septic tank, and the potential to create our own energy with solar panels.
All of this requires money, and we’ve managed to secure funding for the first steps (outside spaces, indoor remedial works to toilet the gable ends, insulating the loft). We turned our attention in June to funding the toilet extension, re-modelling the kitchen and meeting room, and other works. We also require a building warrant. The architectural work, engineering certification & quantity surveying is already underway for this.
Update: 27th June 2022
The Outdoor Community Space is Opening Up
Today we tested ground conditions to prepare for the installation of the car park surface and drainage. The surface will be laid in October by our chosen contractor, and will be a honeycomb structure suitable for planting glass and wildflowers in the lattice work. The honeycomb is made from recycled electrical cable sheathing. There is also a lay-by to install, an entry and exit, and underground services. The geotechnical test will help determine the exact depth of aggregate for the surface. Getting this right means we guarantee the surface’s life and eliminates over-specified materials. It also lets us re-purpose some of the existing car park near the Hall for an underground sewage treatment plant and an extension housing storage and accessible WCs.
In addition to the car park we will lay 200m of new hedging in the winter, plant more native trees and make preparations for a covered seating & BBQ area. This is in addition to the 40 trees and shrubs already planted (and happily growing!). Thanks to Tom Macpherson for the digger work. Raeburn Drilling & Geotechnical provided the technical input.
Update: 23rd June 2022
We have good news to share about our re-development. After bidding for funds we have been kindly offered grant awards & support for the following;
- Gable End roof & wall repairs (essential as a result of advice from our Structural Engineers)
- Repairs to the guttering & walls.
- Insulation for the roof spaces for the main hall & toilets/entrance
- Road works & civil engineering to a ‘green space’ over the road from the Hall for events, car parking & sports.
- Preparatory design work for a new entrance, much needed further storage & outside accessible loos.
Works will commence when our appointed contractors are ready to go. We’ll put a call out for volunteers to help with insulating the loft & re-decorating the loos.
This phase of re-development helps in various ways. It controls operating costs so we can do our best to not pass on some of the higher electric bills to users – events, sporting and social clubs, & private hirers. We can re-decorate the toilets (once plastered) because the Hall will be water tight. Opening the green space gives us much needed flexibility to host outdoor events and replaces some of the car parking we’ll lose due to re-development of the site. If we experience circumstances again which stop indoor events we’ll have the option to meet outdoors. The Hall will also be greener – less energy is needed to heat and light it. Finally, it enables us to plan a space which can be more flexibility used by a wider pool of the community.
Our next phase re-positions the toilets, re-purposes the existing loos into a kitchen & store, and transforms the green room at the back of the Hall. We need to raise the funds to do this bigger parcel of works, and fundraising work began in May 2022.
Many thanks to our supporters for this part of the re-development – James & Moira Ingleby, Aswanley Estate, Edinglassie Estate, Clashindarroch Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund (Vattenfall), Dorenell Wind Farm Community Benefit Fund (EDF), Cairnie Glass Community Trust (Engie), & the Glens of Foudland Community Benefit Fund (RES).
13th June Meeting
Following the meeting on Monday 13th June please find attached the links to the presentation made and the minutes taken.
If you have any questions or would like to volunteer your help then please contact Tom, details are on page 9 of the presentation.
Following the community consultation the committee will now begin a gradual re-development of the existing Hall. Our plans for a new hall have been forced to adapt because of construction costs and changes in the way we get a new facility funded. We will re-use certain elements from the new hall plans, merging them into a facility which better meets our community’s use of the space. Your feedback given in the community consultation will help steer this work. The extent of the works require fundraising, so the pace of re-development depends on successful bids from a range of supporters.
If you’d like to volunteer your time for the project then send us a message using the ‘contact us’ form. You don’t need specific expertise, just the enthusiasm and some time to help out. But…. if you do have specific construction-related skills and can volunteer some time then get in touch. We’re all volunteers, and adding more resource to the project means it’s done quicker!
The re-development is delivered by a sub-group of the committee. This is led by Marc Day (procurement; construction, architectural and structural engineering liaison) and Rachael Ashley (fundraising) with the workload shared between Tom Macpherson, Eoin Harrold, Jonathan Laird, and Andrew Mitchell.
More details about our plan will be given on 13th June (7:30pm) at Glass Hall. Marc Day will share the re-development steps and the sub-group will be ready to answer questions, gather ideas and meet volunteers. A summary of the launch will be added to this part of the website.
We’ll also keep you updated as we progress the re-development.