Finley Structures newsletter 9 - winter 2014 - Page 3

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once thriving industrial factory is back on the up after being stood derelict for six years thanks to Finley Structures . The former Presswork Metals factory , along Durham Way South on Aycliffe Business Park , has been closed since 2008 . Now plans are in place to convert the building into a new leisure facility , with rock climbing being the main attraction . The 70,000 square foot facility will include one of the biggest climbing walls in the country , standing at 20 metres tall , and will stage national tournaments . It will also be used by the British team for training . We purchased the site two years ago and a mixeduse licence was granted by Durham County Council 18 months ago . Now more than £ 600,000 is being spent on the facility , with 150 tonnes of steel currently being constructed by us for the frame . It will be leased to local leisure firm Rockantics , which has been operating from Newton Aycliffe Leisure Centre for the last 20 years . A huge steel frame which will house the 20-metre climbing wall has already changed the skyline on Aycliffe Business Park , and it ' s hoped the new Rockantics will be open in time for the 2015 Easter holidays . The former Presswork Metals building is one of the original World War Two munitions factories that still exist on Aycliffe Business Park . And during the re-construction process , we made a number of interesting historical discoveries . Managing director John Finley said : " We wanted to preserve as many of the original walls as possible , and as we started scraping some of them back to the original brick we found a lot of old signage relating to the War effort . " One wall had a sign saying ' 3.5 shells ' and another said ' this is your air raid shelter '! " We also discovered an old railway line when we were digging the bases out , and we ' re assuming these would transport the ammunitions from the factory to the www . finleystructures . co . uk

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Presswork Metals factory on the up with £ 600k rock climbing venture

main national rail line . " It ' s really interesting stuff and we feel it ' s important that we try to preserve this important piece of Aycliffe heritage , so we ' re planning on creating some sort of permanent tribute to the munitions workers which would be incorporated within the leisure facility for visitors to enjoy ."

STUDENTS SIGN FINAL PIECE OF FINLEY STEEL

choolchildren have left a lasting legacy on a major new sporting venue in the region which is

Sbeing constructed by Finley Structures . Budding athletes from Easterside Academy in Middlesbrough have seen their signatures immortalised in the structure of the main sports

● Finley Structures joint-managing director John Finley ( left ) with Rockantics directors John Crooks and Vicky Postgate on the former Presswork Metals site in Newton Aycliffe .
building at the new £ 18 million Middlesbrough Sports Village . We are constructing the steel frame of the building on behalf of main contractors Willmott Dixon . And 12 pupils from Easterside signed one of the last sections of steel to form part of the new Hub building .
" It ' s been a fantastic opportunity for the children to come along , see how the building is coming on and also to put their names on to the structure ," said Easterside teacher Delyth Linacre who accompanied the youngsters . " When completed the Sports Village will create lots of wonderful opportunities for our children and their families ." Easterside Academy is also one of the local primary schools benefiting from free running coaching provided by Willmott Dixon through a donation . Willmott Dixon Project Manager David Dixon said : " As the key contractor to the Sports Village we feel it is extremely important to benefit and work with the local community . " We are committed to working with local schools and colleges on all sorts of projects . " We ’ d also like to inspire young people to think more about construction when they leave school and the exciting opportunities and variety of career paths they have available to them ." Key elements of the new sports village include an athletics field and stadium with a 400m track and spectator seating , a full-size artificial pitch along with grass football pitches and a fitness gym and sports hall . Work on a new £ 1 million velodrome is also due to start next year . The new track is due to open for use later this month , with work on the new Sports Hub building , associated external sports facilities and sports car parking scheduled for completion in the spring .
Finley Structures Newsletter Issue 6 , 9 Summer , Winter 2014 2013