New Benches at National Memorial Arboretum

National Memorial Arboretum
On Thursday 21st May 2015 The BTPF Chairman, Les McDowell, assisted by members of the Walsall Branch, enjoyed the sunshine at the Arboretum to replace the two wooden benches sited near to the Essex Regiment Memorial. These wooden benches have been in place for some years and the BTPF membership agreed some time ago that they should be replaced by new seats.
Two replacement benches were sourced locally and after paying for them collection was arranged with the intention to install them before the Railway Memorial anniversary service on Friday 22nd May. The new seats are actually not made of wood but are constructed from a resin/polymer mix that will not rot, warp, shrink or crack. They require very little maintenance – a simple wash down with water is sufficient.

The Arboretum staff proved to be very helpful and, using their onsite transport, carried the somewhat heavy boxes down to the site of the existing benches. The new benches came as a flat pack but only required eight bolts to be used and tightened up. The old benches were carefully removed and put to one side for use by the Arboretum to keep other benches serviceable and a small amount of tree trimming undertaken. The new benches went together quite quickly, albeit with some bolts not being very willing to screw in, and the plaques from the old benches were fixed onto the new ones. The new benches were then secured to paving slabs. All in all a very pleasing job.

The photographs show the old and the new plus the “team” that undertook the job – many thanks to Ken Broome, Mick Harris, and Phil Jones for providing so much help – and amusement! Do please go and find the benches when you visit the Arboretum and let me know what you think.

Les McDowell
Chairman

Old Benches

Old Benches

Loading up new benches

Loading up new benches

Supervision

Supervision

One new bench

One new bench

Ken Broome, Phil Jones, Les McDowell and Mick Harris

Ken Broome, Phil Jones, Les McDowell and Mick Harris