Aiming high to restore building

The Sea Cadet Unit on East Sandgate'Picture by Neil Silk  120953a
The Sea Cadet Unit on East Sandgate'Picture by Neil Silk 120953a
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AN historic Scarborough building has got its “cap” back which had been missing for 100 years.

Master craftsman David Simpson (pictured) has restored the crowning glory to the Sea Cadets’ headquarters in East Sandgate.

SONY DSC

SONY DSC

The finial, believed to be missing for the past century, has now been restored to the former St Thomas’s Church building which has been home to the cadets since 1990.

The erection of a new rendered brick finial has also marked the symbolic start of a £250,000 restoration project, which will see its official launch at tomorrow night’s annual inspection.

Built in 1838 in the Perpendicular gothic style of architecture, the church was unusual in having no tower. The finials of the front elevation are over 50ft above street level.

Mr Simpson, a specialist in the restoration of listed buildings in the Old Town, reconstructed the missing finial in cone-shaped brickwork before using modern polymer technology to provide weatherproofing.

Scenesetter'The Sea Cadet Unit on East Sandgate'Picture by Neil Silk  120953b'01/03/12

Scenesetter'The Sea Cadet Unit on East Sandgate'Picture by Neil Silk 120953b'01/03/12

He worked wearing a safety harness, often in sub-zero temperatures and high winds.

The restoration scheme, essential to preserve the building, will involve demolition of the adjacent hall and the provision of a landscaped frontage.

The main building been re-pointed with lime mortar in a preliminary phase as the brickwork had become porous and attention was critical.

The scheme will be launched tomorrow night by Commander Stuart Watt, deputy area officer for the Eastern region.

He will make a speech during the annual inspection event, which sees cadets carry out drills and presentations in front of invited guests.

The cadets have already been raising funds towards the restoration project, with the support of members of the community.

The project will see some major changes and improvements to the building, which is in real need of restoration.