Regeneration Photo Blog – Beneath the Cloak
By Keith Greenough and Kevin Walker
I joined Toynbee Hall on its redevelopment journey over 2 1/2 years ago, having worked in project management for over 15 years. At that time, the estate was the worse for wear, disconnected and confusing, but very much loved by those who worked and visited here. I recognised immediately the benefits and challenges that the project would deliver.
Of course, no voyage this momentous runs smoothly and there have been many obstacles along the way, but being directly involved in all aspects of the project from its inception in its current incarnation, witnessing the bold ideas become reality, is both exciting and inspirational.
From the outside looking in, progress may not be obvious, but beneath the veils of construction, activity is hectic and eventful. As the Halls building rises again, the old Profumo House is steadily falling before a new gateway to Toynbee Hall replaces it.Knowing that what I do contributes to securing the future of this landmark institution fills me with both pride and pleasure, and project mascot notwithstanding, there have been a few ‘Screams’ along the way – however this is one of the most interesting and motivational journeys I have undertaken and I’m looking forward to reaching our destination together soon.
Kevin Walker, Redevelopment Coordinator
On arriving at Toynbee Hall the most obvious change outside was that the facade on Wentworth Street is now standing in splendid isolation. Otherwise it seemed that little had changed since my last visit a few weeks ago. How wrong could I be! Beneath the cloak of the canopy, hoardings and scaffolding a great deal has happened. The extension to the rear of the hall is taking shape. A new entrance hall has been opened up. A corridor linking the two halves of the upper floor has been constructed. New wall panels, insulation, roofing, wiring and services have been installed. And all the while the original features continue to be protected and preserved. It is truly fascinating to witness all this unfolding.
Keith Greenough, Photographer