Opening date pushed back as builders burrow on at Cuerden Valley Park

Trenching for underground water pipes which will heat the ground breaking new eco-friendly centre.
Trenching for underground water pipes which will heat the ground breaking new eco-friendly centre.

Update: The ground-breaking project could become the first in the UK with no concrete, cement and no PVC plastic

Is the new eco-friendly visitor centre and café at Cuerden Valley Park open yet?

Trenching for underground water pipes which will heat the ground breaking new eco-friendly centre.

Trenching for underground water pipes which will heat the ground breaking new eco-friendly centre.

It was meant to launch in October but now trust manager Simon Thorpe says it will open in March.

“The staff move into the building in January,” he said. “We hope to launch in time for the Easter weekend.”

What has delayed work?

“It has been such a wet summer,” said Simon.

Decking being laid for the cafe

Decking being laid for the cafe

The complexity of the building with straw bales and timber frames has also meant that work has taken time. Most of the work has been done by volunteers.

How much money is going into the scheme?

When the project started it was costed at £400,000 but now the figure is totting up to half a million pounds.

Why is that?

Simon said: “Because the project has taken much longer than we anticipated the costs have increased. Brexit has also pushed prices up. So it has gone over budget but we have found the money to meet that from Trust reserves and from donations from the public.”

What is being done now?

Underground water pipes are being installed into trenching. The earth will warm the water which, in turn, will heat the centre. Volunteers are also currently laying the decking for the cafe which is said to boast panoramic views.