Beaulieu Estates reveal plan to rebuild East Boldre community hall destroyed by fire
PLANS have been submitted to rebuild a New Forest community hall which was destroyed by fire last year.
Beaulieu Estates has handed in “like for like” proposals to replace the old clubhouse at Strawberry Fields in East Boldre that was ravaged by the blaze, so it can once again be used by local residents.
The old timber-clad building was wrecked by the fire which broke out on 28th April and had to be tackled by 50 firefighters throughout the night.
Crews from 14 stations including Beaulieu, Brock-enhurst, Lymington, Hardley and Hythe battled the emergency which had been reported shortly after 11pm.
Firefighters used eight pumps, an aerial ladder platform and a total of six jets to extinguish the fire.
What was left of the clubhouse has had to be left as the national park authority needed to give permission to the estate to clear it before work can be started on rebuilding a new one.
The new “like for like” building will be in the same location as the old one, the application said, with a similar design including timber cladding.
According to the document, the fire damaged building “lies derelict” and has become a “major health and safety hazard for children who have started to throw stones and potentially trespass on the site with intentions of further damage”.
Before it was destroyed, the clubhouse had been used by a local motorcycle club for meetings and, prior to that, by the Royal British Legion.
The estate also said that the new clubhouse will “be used for the same purpose as previously, providing a community hall for local gatherings”.
A spokesperson for Beaulieu Estate said the intention of the planning application is for it “to be the first steps in clearing the site, consent for which has to be given by the NPA”.
They said at the moment there is no timescale for when the new building will be started and warned: “It will not be imminent.”
In the application the estate said it planned to rebuild using the existing concrete slab foundations of the old clubhouse.
A “superstructure” of timber post-and-frame will form the new community building.