02 Aug Builders jump through hoops for courts project

On Friday 28th July level 3 building and construction students Son Nguyen, Daniel Stocker and Jordan Hawkins put the finishing touches to a community project they had been working on for several weeks.

The students’ brief was to take down the old basketball backboards on the outside court at Jack Robins Stadium in Stoke and replace them. There were many steps in the process, including measuring up, dismantling , and making up the new backboards and installing them.

The process was much longer and more complicated than the students had anticipated.  As well as many other things, they had to straighten out the bent hoops and apply four coats of both primer and paint. “We were really glad when it was done,” Daniel said.

Daniel was clear when asked what he’d learnt from the project: “Re-using old materials is not fun.” However, the project also brought a sense of satisfaction to the dedicated team. “The teacher told us ‘you can just walk past and think I did that’, Jordan said. “We couldn’t really have made them any better.”

While there weren’t credit opportunities in the project for the students, they did receive a lot of appreciation from Basketball  Association volunteer Heather Walker, as well as drinks and sausage rolls.   She was very impressed with the Nayland crew’s efforts.  “They’ve done a fantastic job,” she said.  “The other day I went past and saw kids still out playing in the rain.”

The new hoops will mean that basketball can be played properly on the outside court again and  teacher Andrew Riordan is justifiably proud of the work his students have put in. “They’re going to drive past it for the next 20 years and know that they did this for the community. It’s always nice to know you’ve been part of something that’s still around.”

By Sera King