HLF Project update - July 2018
We are very pleased to announce that the restoration of the fallen east wall and construction of a short path were completed on 27th June 2018. The build was delayed because of concerns regarding the structure of the existing south wall which was 'leaning'.
Design & Preparation Phase

Several quotes for these works were collected in May 2015 and it was decided to appoint a local contractor, Michael Blanch Hard landscaping and Specialist Builder for the Restoration. 
Michael worked constantly with the Bohemia Walled Garden Association (BWGA) at meetings with personnel from Hastings Borough Council (HBC) and later on with a Structural Engineer Roger Bunny during 2016 and 2017. These discussions were to consider the structure of the existing wall and methods of how to join the new wall to the 'leaning' existing wall. As a result, extra work was required, funding was requested from HBC and the wall construction postponed until 2018.
The Heritage Lottery Fund granted an extension of the project into 2019.  HBC gave us a grant for the extra work for which BWGA were very grateful.
Build Phase
The works, which included the wall and the path commenced on 11th May 2018. Pictures to record the wall build and path construction were taken at various stages.

The path was laid on 15th June. The builders left the garden on 27th June having completed the wall and path construction in record time. The schedule was for 62 working days, but was actually completed in 41 days.  Owing to the isolated location of the garden, there were concerns regarding possible vandalism. The intention was to get the build completed as soon as possible.
The builders worked mostly ten to twelve hour days, six days a week to make that happen. The weather was dry and sunny which was excellent for the lime mortar to set. The time scale was also in consideration of the garden users. The garden was closed for only six days as it was necessary to deliver materials and plant equipment in a safe manner.
Completion Phase
The Trustees and Members of the BWGA are delighted with the wall build.  The wall looks artistically pleasing and the joining of the new and existing walls was intricately made. It is an excellent reinstatement that restores the garden to its former state as a Victorian Walled Garden and makes the garden a much safer community space.

Documents relating to the satisfactory construction of the wall have all been completed.  

The Trustees and Members acknowledge and thank the following for their support during the project:
  • The Heritage Lottery Fund
  • Michael Blanch and his team
  • Hastings Borough Council  (Estates Department, Open Spaces)
  • HBC Ranger Nick Hennessy
  • Roger Bunny, Structural Engineer
  • Hastings Voluntary Action (For their legal advice)
Here are some technical details about the wall build from Michael Blanch.
In the reinstatement of the garden wall, the East wall and the South-east corner:
  • Large sandstone quoins where replaced.
  • 16000 Handmade imperial bricks were blended together to match existing walling.
  • The wall laid to English Bond, in 15 tonnes of lime mortar with 5 tanks of water used (5,000 litres)
  • One pier seen externally built in brickwork with a steel and concrete core, ties the reinstated plum corner to the leaning South wall.
  • 27 meters of new coping stones cap the finished wall.
Michael commented; ‘It was a privilege to be the one to work on a precious piece of history
BWGA Trustees comment; ‘It has been a privilege to have such a skilled and sensitive builder

We are grateful to members and supporters for funds raised in the past.  Four thousand pounds was raised for ‘The wall restoration fund’ which was used towards the build project. We acknowledge their interest and the patience of members and especially plot-holders during the project.