Garrison Commander reopens Aldershot Nursery following major refurb
A major refurbishment project delivered by Aspire Defence and Bourne Construction has transformed a nursery building in Aldershot, in preparation for its centenary celebrations.
Queen Mary’s Nursery is one of several Garrison pre-school settings in Aldershot and has recently undergone a substantial overhaul in time for its 100-year anniversary in 2019.
To commemorate the project, the building was officially reopened on Friday 2nd November by Lieutenant Colonel CJ Baines MBE, Commander Aldershot Garrison. The event was attended by Nursery staff and trustees, children and their parents, and representatives of the Aspire Defence and Bourne Construction project team.
Unveiling the plaque, Lt Col Baines said:
“I am delighted to re-open the new and improved Queen Mary’s Nursery. The children, staff and families have got a fantastic facility. It’s modern and fresh, and I think it’s somewhere you would want to grow up.”
The complex works, carried out by Bourne Construction contracting to Aspire Defence Services Limited, involved 15 different trade disciplines and completed in just six weeks. Nursery staff worked exceptionally hard to ensure all the equipment and furniture was packed away in time for the construction team to move on site at the start of the summer holidays.
Indoor learning and outdoor play areas have been refurbished and redecorated. The works included new lighting and rewiring, a new fire alarm system, improved toilet and laundry facilities, and replacement doors and carpets throughout the interior. Exterior works included installation of security lighting and a new fire escape, resurfaced play areas and complete refurbishment of the sensory room.
Carol Willett, Operations Manager for Aldershot Garrison Pre-school Settings, said:
“The refurbishment is absolutely fabulous and the project team were brilliant. They accommodated us so well and involved us in all the decision making. The whole Nursery feels different now and the children were so pleased to be back.”
Mark Bassett, Programme Manager for ADSL, said:
“This project has been a challenge which has tested my experience no end! The site supervisor, John Wills of Bourne Construction, ensured that works were on programme throughout and that the site remained safe and clean. I believe that of the many projects I’ve delivered over the years, this one shows what many teams with key individuals can achieve, with the right co-ordination and support.”
The original wooden building on Middle Hill was opened in 1899 and was replaced in 1919 with the current brick building. Queen Mary visited in 1922 and it remained a children’s home to support Army families until 1951, when the Nursery opened. The 2019 centenary therefore represents 100 years of children’s care and education on the site. Of the children who attend Queen Mary’s Nursery today, 95% come from military families.
Mark Furnival, Assistant Head Infra PAC for the Defence Infrastructure Organisation, added:
“We are delighted that the staff and children are happy with their ‘new and improved’ Nursery. This extensive refurbishment supports our commitment to delivering a better defence estate and ensuring that military families and the residents of garrison towns have access to high quality local educational facilities.”