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Boatshed Rebuild

The History:  
In 1935, the 1st Epping Scout Group started a Sea Scout section.  In 1939, the Group was fortunate to obtain a boatshed site at Meadowbank, when AWA handed over their jetty, previously used for staff transport to the Homebush transmitter site.  The original shed was built with scrap timber under wartime rationing and opened in 1942, rebuilt in the 1950s, and replaced with a brick structure which opened in 1977 and included a rigging deck that used the concrete piers of the original building.  Although the Sea Scout section merged into the general Scout Troop in October 1984 the Group has continued running sailing and boating activities continuously to this day.

The Project:
Around 2005, the Group Committee started putting money aside because they knew that the building was suffering from 25 years of the salt spray, the weather and more recently the effects from the ferries as they berthed at the nearby public ferry terminal.  At the end of 2015, the Group formed a committee to identify the projected requirements, design an affordable building that would hopefully meet the needs of the Group for the next 30 to 40 years and take the project to completion.  The new Boatshed floor will increase from 89m2 to 132m2 with an extension at the rear which leads to an L-shaped rigging deck.  The timber skid ramp is being replaced with a much safer gangway and floating pontoon to launch and retrieve the boats and canoes.  The floor and roof will be raised by 320 mm.  This is based on the recent and projected rise in sea levels (and a bit more), to maintain a dry floor.  The new roof will complement the roof design of the recently completed Ferry Wharf.

After 4½ years of meetings with Ryde Council, Roads and Maritime Services (RMS), our architect, engineers and Scouts NSW, the construction is now ready to commence.    

The Construction:
30th April 2020 was the special day when the safety fencing was erected around the construction site.

5th May.  The doors have gone and the roof is coming off. 

6th May.  The signage has has gone up while the walls are starting to come down.  Today John Alexander, Federal MP for Bennelong and Jane Siebum, CEO for Scouts NSW, visited to check out the site and both were very pleased with the progress and that the construction was underway.  They were shown around by Brent and John Carolan from Skope Constructions.  The Epping Scout Group received a $350,000 grant from the Federal Government in 2019 to assist with the construction.

8th May.  Only the Council toilet is left standing and the damaged concrete floor has been cut back so that the face can be sealed to prevent the ingress of water again.  The rigging deck has been removed to reveal the concrete piers that probably date back to the early 1940's.  The rigging deck that we have used for the last 40 years was previously the floor space of the original building.

12th May.  The rigging deck, skid ramp and their supports have been removed and put to rest.  The new piers will be protected by the plastic tubing that is visible on the slab.

14th May.  Some of the new plastic sleeves to hold the new piers.  This shows the size of the building extension and the width of the new rigging deck.

18th May.  The last of the plastic sleeves for the new piers are being secured prior to the sleeves being filled with concrete tomorrow.  This gives an idea of the increase in size.  The 9 taller piers at the right are for the building extension while the remaining ones are for the rigging deck.

19th May.  The sleeves are filled with concrete.  Each pier is secured with 3 stainless steel rods inserted 500mm into the rock shelf.