Council and partners make Shiloh’s dream a reality

Published Tuesday, 28th March 2017
Photo caption: (left to right): Mears General Manager, Andy Chambers; Mould Doctor, Geoff Melton; Shiloh Centre Manager, Kevin Quinton; Rotherham Council’s Housing Contract Services and Development Manager, Mark Nearney; Chief Executive Officer, John McDonnell; Rotherham Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing, Cllr Dominic Beck; and Fortem General Manager, David Coldwell.

The new premises for Shiloh, a local charity supporting homeless and vulnerable people, is moving a step closer to opening thanks to the Council and their contract partners Fortem and Mears.

The new premises for Shiloh, a local charity supporting homeless and vulnerable people, is moving a step closer to opening thanks to the Council and their contract partners Fortem and Mears. The old Weighbridge building on Station Road is currently being transformed ready to become Shiloh’s new home from 19th April.

This week marks the completion of the building works and the beginning of the internal makeover which is being carried out by volunteers from a whole of host of organisations across the borough Staff from each of the organisations, senior officers and community volunteers have rolled their sleeves up and are putting their DIY skills into practice to help get the place spick and span by Friday.

This project is a perfect example of the Council and businesses working together to help a local organisation continue to provide much needed support in the community. It has been made possible by the innovative nature of the contracts that the Council has with both Mears and Fortem which ensure that part of the surplus made by the contractors is returned to the council for investment into initiatives to build a better community in Rotherham.

Shiloh’s Chairman John McDonnell has worked with the Council project team and their two major contractors, John said: “For a Council and local businesses, to come together and collaborate so harmoniously on this project is commendable and it has really worked successfully. This year Shiloh is celebrating its 25th year of supporting people in Rotherham who are going through a difficult period in their lives so what better way to celebrate than moving into this superb new facility with potential for even further expansion over the years.”

Councillor Dominic Beck, Cabinet Member for Housing, added: “It is fantastic to see this project nearing completion. Shiloh’s work is so valuable, providing people with a lifeline when they need it the most. I am delighted that we have been able to work together to help secure their future. Having visited Shiloh’s current premises, I have witnessed the buzz of enthusiasm for the great work that the charity does and look forward to seeing this expand in these new premises. I am also encouraged by the response from volunteers who are making their mark on the project by being involved in the makeover week- it shows great community and team spirit.”

Currently the charity provides over 20,000 meals a year and some additional support services. The newly refurbished facility will offer more opportunities for supporting with life skills and help more vulnerable people in Rotherham get back on their feet. Fortem engineers have undertaken extensive works to alter and make safe the electrical system in the property, refurbish toilet blocks and re-commission the heating system, including the installation of a new boiler.

David Coldwell, General Manager of Fortem Rotherham said: “At Fortem we are proud to be people who care about the communities we serve. In these austere times we all know how lucky we are to have good jobs and a reliable income. Our work in the communities of Rotherham provides this for us and frequently brings us into contact with those who are less fortunate. It has been a pleasure to help SHILOH provide facilities that will be a lifeline for those experiencing hardship.”

Mears has undertaken extensive building and structural works to transform the premises. Andrew Chambers, General Manager of the Rotherham branch added: "We are pleased and excited to be involved in the development of Shiloh’s new home at the Weighbridge which we see as a significant step forward for them. We have huge admiration for the vital work Shiloh undertake within the community of Rotherham for those who find themselves in need. We look forward to continuing our work with Shiloh through our partnership with the Council, and leaving a lasting legacy in the community."

There will be an official opening of the premises in May to tie in with the 25th anniversary celebrations when people from across Rotherham will be invited to visit the new premises and get a flavour for the valuable support that Shiloh provides.