OYDC – Day 28

The past week on-site has been an extremely busy one. The first course of tyres is now nearly complete and I have been busy sourcing tyres, almost daily, so that we always have enough to continue with the ramming and building of the court. I am enjoying heading into Lusaka centre, with the procurement manager, Mr Mako, to source them. It has given me an appreciation of how business is done here. Zambia is a great example of Reuse, Reduce, Recycle and the UK could learn quite a lot from there efficiency. Nothing ever goes to waste so you pay for scrap tyres and cardboard boxes. We hadn’t anticipated this prior to coming out however, it was included within the budget because we were working with Zambians on the ground, prior to our arrival who had budgeted for this. Even the excavated ground on-site can easily be removed too as it is a desirable asset.

When I am not tyre shopping, my main job has been packing cardboard into tyres. Dominique and Emily’s presence on-site yesterday was much appreciated as they massively sped up the packing of tyres with cardboard. The men had enough as a result to continue today and tomorrow this will need to continue as we have more tyres and our earlier supply is nearly depleted. I have also tried my hand at ramming a tyre and hope to help some more. The ramming was very tough though and extremely physically exhausting, as well as, taking a while to complete. Luckily I was aware of this as I had met with Rik Lauder, a clever man living in Bristol, who has built a studio in his backyard made from rammed earth tyres. Thus we were able to factor this in to our schedule.

Lil Fraser is not doing nothing and whilst I’ve been away tyre shopping he has been manning the site. He has done an excellent job and the site is progressing well. Unfortunately it is not as fast as either of us hoped but we are continuing to push the contractor for more tools, men and longer working hours to ensure the court’s completion.

In the next few days we hope to continue with the ramming of tyres, complete the seating and have the geotextile membrane and sand delivered to site ready for the next stage.

I would like to mention a special lady in this blog post, my Nana, Margret Pickering. Thank you for all the fundraising you did to help the team.



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