A stunning new Victorian-style bandstand has been supplied to Devonport Park, Plymouth, by the Architectural Metalwork Division of Andy Thornton, as part of a £5.3M Peoples Park restoration project. In the official opening ceremony in April 2012, almost 400 people braved the rain to witness the unveiling of the new structure, to the accompaniment of a local choir and the newly formed park brass band.
The order, valued at £105K, was for the manufacture and site installation of a large 9 metre diameter, 8 metre tall octagonal bandstand, together with the supply of eight traditional copper hanging lanterns and a four-sided pedestal clock. The complete structure was installed on a new solid Plymouth limestone base, which was supplied by the council.
The designer, Robert Bedner of Plymouth firm Research + Design, based the design on old photographs of an original bandstand that was in the park until the 1950s. The bandstand was totally bespoke, with Andy Thornton able to provide detailed CAD drawings of the proposed designs detail for the decorative elements, namely the balustrade panels and column spandrels.
The bandstand is fabricated in prime quality structural steel and features cast aluminium pedestals, capitals and bespoke decorative brackets and balustrade panels that closely match the original bandstand design. Two DDA compliant gate openings have been incorporated, to provide easy access. The columns and balustrades are painted in Plymouth’s corporate colours, green and gold.
The elaborate two-tier roof section incorporates a single skin aluminium sheet, finished in a polyester powder coated gunmetal grey colour with a feature weather vane in gold. The internal boarded ceiling is in solid oak and features an integrated power supply, combining vandal-proof set lights for bands and other performances, as well as the removable period-style copper lanterns.
Said Chris Coldwell, Senior Project Manager for Plymouth City Council: “We were fortunate to have found Andy Thornton Ltd in our search to find a specialist to build our new bandstand. Our experience of working with this company has been extremely positive, from tender interview right through to completion. The company is a highly skilled metal fabricator, sensitive, down-to-earth and understanding of the needs of our community stakeholders, attentive to detail and committed to achieving our programme. Overall it was a pleasure working with Andy Thornton and I would have no hesitation using them again.”