A group of retired engineers have made it their mission to restore the pavilion at Brown’s Golf Course in Sandown.
The pavilion was built, along with the rest of the golf course, by Alexander Kennedy. It opened in 1932 and still contains the two engines installed to generate electricity for both the course and the ice cream factory that stood there.
After being requisitioned in 1942 by the War Office as part of Operation PLUTO (PipeLine Under The Ocean), the project responsible for fuelling the D-Day landings, the pavilion was eventually abandoned in the 1960s as the golf course was no longer needed to generate its own source of electricity. The pavilion fell into disrepair, the roof collapsed, the engines rusted and it became a target for vandals.
This all changed when the local Men in Sheds got involved to renovate the Grade II listed pavilion and its engines. A group of retired engineers, electricians and carpenters have been working hard to restore the building and engines to their former glory with a view to turning the pavilion into a working museum. With six engineers working on the project full-time, the smaller of the two engines is once again running and they are now focusing on getting the second engine working too.
Peter Knight, one of the engineers working on the project, said: “We’re just enjoying ourselves, basically, and we would like to see the project carrying on.”
Mr Knight and the group hope to host open days in the new year, Covid restrictions allowing, so that the public can see the project in action and boost their fund-raising efforts to keep the restoration going.