Cleanliness is next to godliness: Renovated laundry is opened

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“I love doing laundry! Except for putting it in the dryer, taking it out and folding it and then putting it away.”

So the joke goes. But at Ridley we’ve put a lot of work this term into making doing the laundry less dreary for our resident students and guests. In fact, we’ve really gone to town.

If you were at Ridley any time in the past three or four decades the memory of the grim, cold basement laundry is one you may still be trying to erase. It’s a project long overdue, but it’s the first of a programme of improvements we’ll be making to the aesthetics, usability and accessibility of our grounds and buildings.

Over the course of twelve weeks, from the first milestone of getting our Listed Building Consent approval from the City Council to the installation of the final gleaming dryer, the dingy basement room tucked down steps opposite the East end of the chapel has been transformed from top to bottom.

The laundry today
The laundry today

The roof has been replaced, new lighting fitted, pipes upgraded, the heating improved, door and windows refurbished and the internal décor has had a makeover worthy of an episode of DIY SOS. We are grateful to our Head of Facilities & Estates, Anna Russell, our Premises Manager, Trevor Bossley, and our Housekeeping Manager, Helen Corley, for their oversight of the project and commitment to maintaining the highest standards and to keeping on schedule and budget throughout.

The ‘before’ and ‘after’ photos speak for themselves, but we’d love to welcome you back to reap the benefit in person. We’re taking bookings now for sabbaticals and retreats on our Refreshment Programme for the Lent and Easter terms – do get in touch to enquire about availability. We can’t guarantee you’ll love folding your clothes, but the washing and drying will be a joy!