Work progressing on Otters’ new lair

Thursday 3rd September 2020 2:06 pm
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The Coronavirus seriously affected the end of the last playing season for all rugby clubs. The start of the new season has brought in new Welsh Rugby Union protocols for Covid-19 safeguards, but this has not daunted a plucky band of supporters for Championship club, Narberth.

During the ‘closed period’ of the lockdown, local supporter, a vice-president of the club, architect Ken Morgan’s office designed and obtained planning approval for a new facility for the car park which will enhance catering for match day supporters. For years, a cabin on the site had been used to produce burgers and bacon rolls for hungry attendees, but Ken noticed that it was never well-ventilated; it was fairly cramped for the volunteer staff and, customers had to queue in the wind and the rain.

The solution is a new purpose-built building with a spacious fully ventilated kitchen designed to full environmental catering standards and seating for over 20 patrons. This would not be possible without financial, material and labour sponsorship from Ken Morgan’s office and a loyal group of friends and businesses that have been willing to assist the club without remuneration to avoid depleting the RFC of much-needed funds for running the community business.

Stepaside electrician Chris Stevens safely disconnected the electricity supply and committee members known as ‘Mac’ and ‘Jinko’ dismantled the supports of the adjacent grandstand steel staircase. They also organised the removal from site of the burger bar and adjacent steel storage container with the help of Youth team manager, local farmer Bill Ridge, who supplied transport. Llawhaden steel erector Tim Phillips kindly transported the steel reinforcing mesh donated by R & M Williams in readiness for the concrete base.

Next on site over the Bank Holiday weekend was Hywel Griffiths, plant hire contractor. He has been a major financial sponsor of the rugby club for many years. He brought in a team of three machine operatives who set about digging up the tarmac surface and a former floodlighting tower base made of high strength concrete. A man with a pick axe and shovel would never in a month of Sundays achieve the same results as the four-ton pneumatic drill which dispensed with the concrete cube in a couple of hours. Hywel and his team plan to erect timber shutters before casting the concrete floor slab.

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