Carbon neutral centre unveiled on Bolberry Road
A new community centre at the heart of Collier Row demonstrates the green credentials of the latest community developments.
Local residents, council dignitaries and Member of Parliament Andrew Rosindell all descended on Bolberry Road, Collier Row on 02 February to witness the formal opening of the Sapphire Jubilee Community Centre.
The ribbon-cutting ceremony signalled the opening of what has been an eagerly anticipated resource in a community that is seeing rapid growth. Local letting agents on Collier Row are seeing a surge in interest for the area, with new families flocking to this previously little-known suburb, attracted by its proximity to London, its competitive prices and, crucially, its growing range of local facilities, of which this is a prime example.
“Carbon neutral” is a phrase that is often thrown around as something good, but when directly questioned, some people are not entirely sure what it means. If you fall into this category, don’t be shy, you’re certainly not alone.
To be carbon neutral, a building, activity or operation must not result in a net release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Essentially, this means it does not create more carbon dioxide than it consumes. So how does the Sapphire Jubilee Community Centre achieve this feat?
The first thing that visitors notice when they approach the community centre from the outside is the solar panels. These contribute to the power needs of the building, which are not as significant as you might think, thanks to another green energy source that is less obvious from the building’s exterior.
Beneath the structure is a bore hole running 140 metres below ground. This feeds a heat pump, which provides sufficient energy to heat the building and the water.
Finally, the entire construction is designed to capture every drop of rainwater, and feed this into the toilet cisterns and for watering the landscaped area.
The community centre is not just environmentally friendly, it also boasts cutting edge technology, to ensure every member of the community can make the best possible use of it, regardless of their personal circumstances.
With a main hall, kitchen, office and toilets, the centre can accommodate up to 80 people seated or 120 standing. It is fully accessible to those reliant on wheelchairs or
with other mobility constraints, and an underfloor induction loop provides assistance for those with hearing difficulties.
As a further acknowledgement of the digital age in which we all live, the building has WIFI throughout, so whether you need to check your email, send out a Tweet about the event you are attending or just want to order a pizza, you can do it without having to worry about your mobile signal.
There are also facilities on hand for the younger members of the community. The centre includes a secure outdoor play area that is designed for the under-10s.
If you would like to book the Sapphire Jubilee Community Centre or just want to find out what’s on, get in touch with the Community Engagement Team at Havering Borough Council.