The existing parish hall consists of two ground floor rooms: the Pritchard Room and the Hopkins Room. The photo below was taken on the day the builders moved in. In addition to building a new extension, these rooms will be completely refurbished.
The ground floor of the new building will provide a new kitchen, bar and parish office. Click the image below to see the full-size plans.
The new kitchen will allow food to be stored and prepared for parish functions. Up to now, it hasn't even been possible to keep food warm. Now it can be cooked on the premises! Because the kitchen will be fully-fitted and checked for health and safety, we will be able to use it, for example, to prepare food for charities like the Gatehouse, just across the road.
Next to the kitchen, there will be a new, secure bar, complete with lockable hatch. It will open where the window is now (see the photo above). This will create a significant extra space in the Pritchard Room by taking out the existing bar, so parish functions will be less cramped.
The Pritchard and Hopkins rooms will be redecorated, and more efficient heating installed. The screen that divides them will be replaced by something lighter and easier to open and close. This means that more can happen in the Parish because there will once again be two rooms that can be used independently. A new door will be cut into the wall near the front of the Hopkins Room. It will open into the Church, and emerge just to the left of the shrine of St Thérèse of Lisieux, thereby enabling easy access for the congregation.
On the plans you may notice a new lift marked. This will provide access to the library, once it is finished, and allow the fathers to reach their new rooms at the top of the building.
Finally, there will be a new parish office, which should allow everything to run even more smoothly from now on. There will be more space for storage of important files and papers, and more desk space, so more people can work in the office at the same time. A more efficient office means that we can spend less time doing admin and more time looking after parishioners!