2018 has been such an exciting year and we are delighted with the progress made at The Yealm. The main contract work started on-site in the summer and now we’re at the stage where the foundations for the new buildings are in place, the roof has been stripped, and visible wall building work is well underway. The public footpath which wraps around the back of the site is a great viewpoint to see all that is going on.
So much has happened over the course of 2018, and in case you have missed our regular updates on social media, we thought we would provide you with a summary of all the happenings in 2018.
Onsite progress at The Yealm
Despite the blistering sun we had during the summer, by July Wedgewood Groundworks had firmly moved forward with the development, including the creation of:
- the car parking area to the rear of Yealm Wood
- the western woodland garden, replete with lush planted areas
- a beautiful seating area, complete with its stunning hand-crafted feature stone wall.
- Installation of all the drainage and new utilities connection under the car parking area to the front of the old hotel building.
Working with the landscape team, Simon also carefully selected interesting and unusual additions to the western woodland area.
During September and October, piling for the foundations for Yealm Wood was well underway. Piling and ground improvement work specialists GeMech installed the piles by using the steel-cased bottom-driven method and specialist light-weight rigs well suited to sites where access is limited. Each of the 18 no. piles – typically five to six metres long – were driven into the underlying mudstone bedrock.
By November, Devon Contractors had laid the foundations for The Hide. This included the ground-floor slabs for the four new apartments that will nestle beside the former hotel building under the canopy of a wonderful old beech tree. The drainage was completed too, which was no easy feat. We had to dig deep right through layers of a steep, sloping form of Devonian rock known as Dartmouth Slate, which required ingenious engineering solutions to ensure slope stability.
Groundworks and civil engineering specialists 4mation-sw Ltd were also hard at work laying the foundations for Yealm Wood and Harbour Edge, which included steel reinforcement and concreting works. Attention then turned to the main construction starting with the external walls.
November also saw work on the roof of the old hotel well underway. But before we had even started up there, we discovered some furry friends had taken up residence! To help our nocturnal neighbours move out, we set up new bat boxes in the woodland. With the help of a local ecologist, they have been safely moved to their new home.
The roof is now being stripped, with all the structural alterations needed to enable the new rooftop balconies and larger windows for living and bedroom spaces. The intricate zinc soffit (overhanging eves) detail will be restored and, if possible, the guttering too.
Meanwhile, Tom Flint and his gardening team have been getting their hands dirty focusing on the woodland gardens and planting. Local landscape gardener Tom is from Holbeton, and has been assisted by Georgina, Yealm developer Simon and Judy Friend’s cousin. Tom is actively managing the site and its wildlife, and working organically without using chemicals and pesticides.
Offsite progress at The Yealm
We haven’t just been busy working onsite at the Yealm, behind the scenes lots has been taking place. In June this year, we produced and delivered to the local community, River Life, a one-off magazine to celebrate the life, work and people of Newton Ferrers and Noss Mayo.
River Life was not only an acknowledgement of a truly beautiful area, but also an opportunity to tell residents, visitors, and potential buyers about the development of the former River Yealm Hotel, which has been an integral part of the community’s fabric for the last 100 years. The magazine was well received resulting in an extra print run to meet local demand.
Then in October this year we launched this website. The website has all you need to know about our stunning riverside development. You can learn about each individual luxury home and the rich history of the former hotel and Newton Ferrers, view images of the beautiful local environs as well as finding out the best places to eat, drink, walk and play. And of course, you can catch up on the scheme’s progress from groundworks to building works as well as local news (see above!).
Our Community Focus
Supporting the local community is important to us too, so we were delighted to have sponsored several local events this year. We sponsored the ‘Life on The Yealm’ BioBlitz 2018, a 24-hour wildlife search which celebrated the diverse nature present in and around the Yealm estuary.
After that, we sponsored the River Yealm Regatta. Held in August every year, the regatta is an important part of village life. It’s a firm fixture in everyone’s calendar and sees Newton Creek, Noss Creek and the River Yealm come alive with team rowing and sailing races and events. This vibrant festival also has plenty of land-based festivities in both villages too.
And finally, last month, we sponsored, for the second year, Newton Ferrers Primary School Fireworks display which was a fantastic community event, raising money for the local school.
So that was 2018, and we are extremely excited about what’s to come in 2019. We are aiming for the show apartment to be ready at the end of May and completion of the whole project late summer 2019.
Do continue to stay in touch via our website, social media accounts and if you haven’t already, join our mailing list. Until then, from the team at The Yealm, we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!