A new community building in Aberdeenshire aimed at tackling social isolation, to which Actis donated more than 400 sq m of insulation materials, has been officially opened.
The official opening of the 3,500 sq ft timber frame and blockwork Aboyne and Mid-Deeside Community Shed was attended by around 100 people who were given a chance to see the range of facilities available for men and women living in the area.
Actis was one of a number of companies offering their products or services free of charge to help reduce the cost of the £450,000 plus project, as part of its policy of giving something back to the communities in which it operates.
The shed is part of the growing Men’s Shed movement – although this one is not gender-specific- and is one of more than 400 such enterprises across the UK.
Rotary club member Stuart Robertson, one of the driving forces behind the shed’s creation, said: “The local laird, The Earl of Aboyne cut the ribbon and a young piper played to the assembled throng with light refreshments provided. The whole event was just marvellous. As if that wasn’t enough excitement, our photovoltaics are generating away on the roof and with the help of Actis insulation products the building is relatively inexpensive to run.”
Community groups have been using the facility for the past year, with the workshop element offering pursuits such as woodwork, metalwork, welding, car maintenance, small appliance repair, electronics projects and stone carving.
The upstairs floor, open six days a week, offers space for arts, craft, music and keep fit groups. A social area provides facilities for small groups and general social interaction in line with one of the project’s principal aims – to combat loneliness and improve general wellbeing, with an artist-in- residence providing arts and craft classes two days a week. It also has a large kitchen for teaching cookery and kitchen skills as well as providing on-site catering.
Actis donated nearly 150 sq m of insulating breather membrane Boost R Hybrid, more than 130sq m of 50mm honeycomb insulation Hybris and an identical quantity of insulating vapour control layer HControl Hybrid towards the project.