Woodlands Meed tops out
A 'topping out' ceremony, which marked the completion of the highest point of a building, was held on the new roof of the school recently.
Procured through the Southern Construction Framework constructed by ISG for client West Sussex County Council the new facilities in Burgess Hill is being created for 100 children with special educational needs and disabilities. The new college building is on track for completion this summer with the old college facilities being demolished over the summer holiday, with Woodlands Meed college students set to begin learning in their new facilities from September this year.
The roof and concrete structure of the building are now complete and to mark this significant milestone, the project team were joined by Woodlands Meed pupils, staff, governors, county councillors and council staff at a special event.
Speaking at the event, Woodlands Meed headteacher Adam Rowland said: “Since the ground-breaking event last year I can't believe how quickly this has been built, and having it in our backyard, it's been incredible to see it develop over time. It's going to make such a huge difference to our pupils to have the provision that will enable them to succeed and flourish in their lives. A huge, huge thank you.”
College pupils and teachers marked the occasion by signing their names and leaving personal messages in the new roof structure. The invited guests were then given tour of the inside of the new building.
West Sussex County Council Leader Paul Marshall was joined at the event by council chairman Pete Bradbury and Cabinet Member for Learning and Skills Nigel Jupp.
Mr Jupp said: “It is marvellous to me to stand here today to see all those plans coming to fruition, and we very much look forward to completion later this year. “This is a sunny day for me to see this building so far advanced. Helping children and young people to fulfil their potential is a key priority within Our Council Plan, and this new college will enable Woodlands Meed pupils to do just that.”
Trevor White, Operations Director at ISG, said: "We are delighted to have welcomed representatives from West Sussex County Council, Woodlands Meed College and our neighbours at Birchwood Grove Primary School to site to celebrate this significant milestone towards the delivery of a fantastic facility for young people with special education needs and disabilities. With the concrete structure of the building and the roof now in place, ISG's team is now focussing on external finishes of the college building as well internal fit out over the coming weeks and months, as we work towards completion this summer."
The new college will feature, an outside courtyard and amphitheatre where pupils can sit together and hold sporting and social events, a new hydrotherapy pool, more internal space for 12 new classrooms and specialist learning areas for music, sciences and food technology, high quality sporting facilities including all weather pitches, and a two-court sports hall and accessible changing facilities, a new large dining hall and kitchen, common room and a range of therapy spaces and new outside learning and play areas including classrooms, an outside gym and gardening areas.
The inclusion of solar panels on the roof will make the facilities energy efficient, in turn reducing energy costs and the college's carbon footprint.
The project is due to finish late summer 2023.