Dinton Pastures’ new £2.4 million activity centre opened to the public this month and has already been enjoyed by many visitors. On Thursday 22 September 2021 the new centre was officially opened by Wokingham Borough Mayor, Cllr Keith Baker MBE.
The activity centre is Wokingham Borough’s first net zero carbon building, featuring eco-friendly materials and functions, supporting the Council’s commitment to be carbon neutral by 2030. The two-storey building comprises Siberian larch exterior cladding which will weather over time to blend in with the natural surroundings of the country park which offers an oasis of woodland, meadows and lakes. The materials were certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).
The activities offered at the Dinton activity centre are inclusive to all audiences and have been road tested by the Caring Listening and Supporting Partnership, a self-advocacy charity for adults with learning disabilities, in early September. The new ground floor accessible washroom is a great addition compared to the old facilities.
The new activity hall houses a fun climbing wall that has been hand painted to bring the outdoors indoors. The woodland and water scenes depict the flora and fauna found around the country park and will be the prefect hybrid of physical and environmental education. The wall will be operated on a pay and play session for family groups, and on a pre booked basis for school and youth groups in term time. The modern locking system used on the climbing lines ensures climbers are always safe.
Cllr Parry Batth, executive member for environment and leisure, said: “I am delighted that Dinton’s activity centre is at its final stages. Since opening, it has already created fantastic opportunities for residents – to work, to play and most importantly, spaces to socialise and network, an important aspect that is much needed, especially after the easing of lockdown restrictions.”
Cllr Wayne Smith, executive member for planning and enforcement, said about the project: “We are so proud to have such an impressive and innovative building in our borough. As well as the amazing energy-efficient technologies the building also allows everyone to explore and get involved with accessible equipment and changing facilities. Dinton activity centre is a great asset to the borough.”
Designed by HLM Architects, the Dinton activity centre is Wokingham Borough’s first net zero carbon building, featuring a range of energy-efficient technologies, including solar panels and windcatchers on the roof for natural ventilation, low energy LED lighting and air source heat pumps, all of which will significantly reduce the centre’s overall energy demands and maintenance overheads.
Most notably, carbon emissions during the construction of the new centre were significantly reduced as seventy-five percent of the build was completed offsite by Reds10, a leader in modular building construction. The design, build and operation of Dinton’s activity centre supports the council’s mission to make Wokingham a carbon neutral borough by 2030.
Paul Ruddick, Chairman of Reds10, said: “Dinton activity centre will pave the way towards carbon neutrality for Wokingham Borough, but it is also truly exemplar of what offsite construction can achieve. It has been a talking point for the construction industry already. We are looking forward to seeing the local community enjoy this amazing space.”
The centre is now entirely open to the public to simply enjoy the view on the terrace with a coffee or to turn your hand to something more adventurous. Don’t miss out on some of the activities coming up, such as our half term Wild Sessions and Sailing Courses. You can find a list of the upcoming events on the Dinton Pastures webpage. Final works to the grounds surrounding the new activity centre, including improvements to the car park, will be finished later this year.
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