East Anglia RFCA completed an upgrade of the Waltham Abbey Cadets’ hut for the Essex Army Cadet Force, creating a more welcoming space for Army Cadets and adult volunteers who train there.
The East Anglia RFCA Estates team made improvements to the building inside and outside, to make the space more functional, more practical as well as more welcoming.
Externally, the RFCA team made it easier for the cadets to train outside during the winter months by improving the external lighting, fitting powerful yet energy-efficient LED floodlights.
To enable wheelchair access, the team added a ramp and handrails to the main entrance and fire exit.
The windows were all upgraded to new thermally-efficient double-glazed uPVC windows, replacing the original drafty single-glazed units. The existing timber cladding was repainted and the canopies replaced to keep the building looking sharp for years to come.
Inside, the team installed energy-saving LED lighting throughout, replacing doors with fire doors in compliance with current building regulations and replacing the toilet facilities.
As an additional energy-saving measure, the team installed new electric heaters with timers; so the heating can be set to turn on just before the detachment opening times and turn off again automatically at a set time. This means when the cadets and adults arrive on a cold day, the building is warm and welcoming, and there’s no risk of the heaters accidentally remaining on while the building isn’t in use.
This is another great example of the work the RFCA team carries out throughout the year; adding energy-saving measures, improving access, applying common sense to make the buildings easy to run locally by detachment commanders.
The East Anglia RFCA Estates team completed the project in just under seven weeks for £70k.
The project is funded by the RFCA’s self-generated income; our team raises funds through applying for non-domestic rate rebates with local councils and through commercial lettings. Usually these funds are used for reactive maintenance to buildings across our six counties; our estate comprises of 500 buildings over 200 sites. But recent increases in council tax breaks and commercial lettings have made it possible for much needed upgrades to take place this year.
We are relentless and creative in striving to keep all the cadet huts altogether welcoming and fit-for-purpose so the cadets, their parents, and the adult volunteers are happy to return week after week, year after year.
Construction firm Maldon Building Services was awarded the contract to carry out the refurbishment at the Waltham Abbey cadet hut in a competitive tender process.
The RFCA team have another ten projects of a similar scale in different stages of completion across our six counties, running alongside larger capital building projects and smaller reactive maintenance projects.