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3 of our favourite community-led projects

The team at A.W. Hardy has been fortunate enough to play an instrumental role in a series of builds that have had a profound impact on their local communities.

As our director Harry Hardy says:

“Having been a prominent builder in the local area for a few decades, we are always grateful for the opportunity to work on another project that benefits the local and wider community. It has always been important to us and it will continue to be a factor in the decision making process for our team.”

We’ve revisited three of our favourite community led builds from over the years (plus a couple of other notable contracts that deserve a mention).

Bourn Hall, Wickford

In 2018, we were instructed by the Healthcare Property Company (HPC) to help them create a three-storey, purpose-built fertility clinic in Wickford for the IVF pioneer Bourn Hall, which already operated sites elsewhere in the East of England.

With a contract value of £3.1 million, this new build was certainly a large undertaking for Bourn Hall, so all hands needed to be on deck to ensure an exceptional result. Big in stature and bold in design, what’s perhaps more important is this state-of-the-art building has brought the firm’s groundbreaking fertility tests and treatments within reach of patients in Essex and North London – something that we know hundreds of families across the region will be extremely grateful for.

Take a look at the various elements of the project – including its head-turning exterior façade – in our case study. More information on the facilities that were created can be found in this write-up from Premier Construction News.

Chantry Centre

Designed to be the first permanent home for Billericay Town Council since it was officially formed in 1996, the Chantry Centre on Chantry Way has become a welcoming hub for residents in Billericay since it was completed during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Working with project managers Ingleton Wood, we replaced the old Chantry Way Day Centre with a distinctively more modern facility that now boasts high specification meeting rooms and an eye-catching double height hall.

This multi-use space has housed all kinds of events over the last few years, from public council meetings to not-for-profit community cinema showings.

Take a look at the full Chantry Centre case study here, or read this article from Construction Anglia for more information on what the build entailed.

Southend Pier

Most Essex residents are familiar with the iconic Southend Pier – but did you know that A.W. Hardy was part of the dream team that helped to revamp the pier’s western side entrance back in 2019?

By providing a new reception, café, seating area and toilets – as well as better access for wheelchair users – we overhauled this part of the landmark just in time for the summer season. The refurbishment replaced poorly maintained shutter doors and an old, tired arcade with a light, bright, much more appealing space that has simultaneously transformed the frontage and delivered better facilities for visitors.

Here’s a press article on the build from The Echo. You can also learn more about this £480,000+ revamp here.

Another notable project that has brought a great deal of value to our community in Essex is Bluebird, a 50-bed development on Southchurch Avenue in Southend-on-Sea that was handed over to the homeless charity HARP at the end of 2022. Find out why Bluebird has been so important for local people who are recovering from a period of homelessness here.

During our work in the ecclesiastical sector, we have completed various developments for the Salvation Army, plus handled the renovations for Benfleet Methodist Church, Christ Church Centre in Southend-on-Sea, and West Leigh Baptist Church in Leigh-on-Sea. Through these essential building and refurbishment works, we have helped to create welcoming spaces from which volunteers and charities can deliver their much-needed support from safe, contemporary facilities.

If you were involved in any of the projects covered here or have seen first-hand just how much these builds have benefited those who live and work nearby, we’d love to hear about your experiences.