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The Hog

Our Starter Shed, The Hog - a Groundhog Welfare Container kindly donated by GE HealthCare, is now in place at its home on Hogtrough Lane. We held our official Open Day on Saturday, 6 March, 2023.

The story of The Hog, where it came from and how it got to us, can be found here.

Our Shed

Our Starter Shed will be a Groundhog Welfare Container, kindly donated by GE HealthCare, from the decommissioning of The Grove Centre site in Amersham.

The metal unit has approximate dimensions of 9m x 2.5m.  It is structurally sound, but is in need of a bit of TLC with peeling paint and some superficial rust in some areas.

It is split into two sections with access to each section via its own external door.  There are five high level windows, two at each end and one in the front of the unit.  The internal surfaces are all boarded out.

The right hand section is configured as an office, and is fitted with 5 x 240v double sockets, 3 data ports, a small bar heater and 2 strip lights.  The internal dimensions of this section are approximately 6m x 2.2m. This will be our first workshop.

The left hand section is configured as a small store, and is fitted with a small distribution box, 2 x 240v single sockets and 1 strip light. The internal dimensions of this section are approximately 2.7m x 2.2m. This will be our kitchen and social space.

Our Location

The Wendover Shed has a home. Thanks to Wendover Parish Council, we are able to site our Groundhog container by the allotments on Hogtrough Lane.

Our shed will be located next to the existing wooden shack being used to collect water for the allotments. This may be an interesting future project. It's basically a shed, after all.

Phase 1 - Site Survey

GE Healthcare very kindly offered to deliver and install the container to our site. We were a little worried about access, but the man with the crane has taken on the challenge. However, if we run into problems we my need a helicopter!

Phase 2 - Laying the Foundation

The Wendover Parish Council grounds staff kindly offered to clear and level the site for the Groundhog container. Work started in the cold with the clearing of some bramble and dead shrubbery. The levelling work needed some serious kit, so a 5 tonne crane was brought in just as things thawed and got muddy!

No tress were hurt in the making of this picture. Only dead scrubbery and brambles were removed.

Our new home is actually pretty big. Enough space for our container and maybe a covered outdoor space in front of the shed for messy work. The mud will all be back to lush grass in the Spring!

Thanks again to the Parish Council ground crew. Amazing work!

Our plan is to place the container on railway sleepers, sourced from Chesham Fencing, laid on top of a bed of Type 1 hardcore ballast. We now await delivery of the container.

Phase 3 - The Lift

GE HealthCare kindly offered to organise the delivery and installation of the Groundhog container from its home at The Grove Centre in Amersham to its new home on Hogtrough Lane.

At 11:17am on 17 February 2023, Recycled Products Ltd carefully lowered our Groundhog Welfare Container - The Hog - onto its lovingly prepared base of railway sleepers, under the watchful eye of the unit’s donors GE HealthCare.

It wasn’t the easiest of jobs. Manoeuvring a 30ft x 8ft shipping container up a farm lane on the back of an artic lorry, complete with giant crane, was quite something to watch. However, the guys from Recycled Products Ltd and GE HealthCare proved themselves up to the challenge, with a little help from our friends at Bank farm.

Thanks to everyone at GE HealthCare, Recycled Products Ltd, Bank Farm and Wendover Parish Council who helped make possible this major milestone in the realisation of the Wendover Shed.

Now that the Wendover Shed is physically in place we can proceed with fitting out the workshop and kitchen.

Phase 4 - The Kitchen

Our first job was be to set up a rudimentary kitchen. We now have a kettle and somewhere to sit!

Open Day

We held our official opening on Saturday, 6 March. This was always our target date, so we were extremely pleased to be able to meet this major milestone.

It was an informal gathering and we numbered about 30 people. We met a number of people interested in helping with the shed, some new members and potential benefactors.

We have now published our initial Shed sessions, starting with Coffee and Natter meet-ups three times a week.

Next Steps

With the main project now complete, the following phases will be run and reported as separate projects:

  • The Electrics - Off-grid electrical set-up using solar, wind and batteries

  • The Workshop - Initial set-up of the workshop space

  • The Outdoor Space - Creation of a covered area for messy work

  • Lick of Paint - The container could do with some external TLC

Our Supporters

We would very much like to thank our supporters for this projects:

  • Wendover Parish Council for allowing us to locate our shed at the Hogtrough Lane allotments. Also, special thanks to the ground crew for their amazing efforts preparing the site ready for installation of the container.

  • GE HealthCare for the kind donation of the Groundhog Welfare Container, plus their efforts to relocate the container to our proposed site.

  • Recycled Products Ltd for their amazing offer to deliver the Groundhog Welfare Container.

  • Bank Farm for supporting the installation of the Hog.

  • Chesham Fencing for giving us a deal on our railway sleeper shed base.

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