Garsington Opera’s Project Manager, Angus Boyd-Heron, will be a familiar face to our members and supporters as part of the vital ground team making the annual Festival such an incredible experience. But Angus is also our “man on the ground”, working with our contractors on the build of the new Garsington Studios. We asked him to tell us how the project is progressing.
“The main structure is in place and, but for a few technicalities, is nearly water-tight. The clay tiles are on the roof and the brick, flint, and black featherboard used on the exterior means it really looks like a typical Chiltern Hills building. It is looking fantastic, and we are all hugely excited about moving in later this year. Being on-site most days, you can forget how impressive the space is until you’re showing someone around the site. Every single person has been so excited by what they’re seeing.
Much of the internal structure is in place. There are little fascinating details that serve as a reminder for the purpose of the space. For example, the sloping walls to acoustically optimise the coaching rooms. You can walk around each floor and just been blown away by the views across the valley of the Wormsley Estate. Just imagine seeing the changing seasons from that height! You can also see our opera pavilion about a mile away and it’s a reminder of how wonderful it will be that the company will all be here working together.
We expect to get the keys from our contractors later in the summer, and then we’ll just need to fit out the spaces with fixings and furnishing. I think it will be such a beautiful thing when the building really comes to life, full of lots of different people, singing, dancing and just coming together to be creative.
In the meantime, there’s still lots to be done, including bat surveys (a more unusual part of the job) but we feel it’s absolutely crucial to ensure Garsington Studios exists in harmony with its surroundings”.