Roof for Bear Ravine

A temporary roof has been installed on DZG’s Modernist Bear Ravine in the latest stage of its restoration.

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The work is being carried out during Phase Two of DZG’s £1.15million Heritage Lottery-funded Tecton programme to restore Berthold Lubetkin’s pioneering structures to their former glory.

The plastic shrink-wrapped roof will allow our team of construction workers to plough ahead with painting and floor sealing over the winter period, and will be removed once the work is complete, hopefully, next month.

Construction Supervisor, Carlo Diponio, said: “The temporary roof is being installed in preparation for the winter weather.

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“It will allow us to move forward with the decoration of the Bear Ravine and will be removed once the work has been completed.”

DZG has the world’s largest single Tecton collection – with all 12 buildings gaining World Monuments Fund status in 2009.

Over the past 18 months an in-house team of construction specialists, boosted by DZG concrete repair apprentices and contractors, has successfully completed restoration of the Safari Shop and iconic wave Entrance, before focusing on the Bear Ravine – considered by many to be the most impressive of Lubetkin’s zoo structures – and adjacent Kiosk One, using authentic 1930s techniques. 

Lessons learned during Phase One have aided production for the second part of the programme and restoration work on the Bear Ravine is six months ahead of schedule thanks to innovative tools designed in-house to ease the laborious task of patching in concrete.

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Lubetkin’s Bear Ravine in 1937