Nottingham City Homes celebrated the development of an Independent Living block reaching its apogee with a traditional ‘topping out’ ceremony – by placing a miniature oak tree on the highest point of the building.
Currently under construction, in the footprint of the former Lenton Court, is the new Independent Living scheme for older residents, Palmer Court. The 54 flats are being constructed by regeneration specialists, Keepmoat as part of the city’s Building a Better Nottingham scheme and will be completed by Spring 2015.
As the roof section of the construction neared completion, Keepmoat craned in an oak tree which was placed on the roof to mark the stage in the project. The tree will be retained and planted within the communal garden area which is being planned for Palmer Court.
The topping out tradition can be traced back to Viking times, with the earliest references dating from around 700 A.D, when Scandinavians topped off the construction of new halls with sheathes of grain. This ceremony was carried out to bestow good luck on the future occupants and is a tradition that quickly spread across Europe. Bringing the tradition back to life, with a modern twist, Nottingham City Homes wanted to ensure the Scandinavian tradition had a local feel, with the use of a miniature oak tree.
Watch the short video below which shows the oak tree being lifted into place.
BBC radio Nottingham covered the Topping out ceremony – Audio below.