The £37.5 million project comprises an early years school, three storey secondary school, a Special Education Needs (SEN) school and a community leisure centre. The four form entry secondary school, Littleport Academy, will initially cater for 600 pupils aged 11-16, with the potential to expand up to 750 pupils.
The SEN school on the same site will eventually cater for 110 pupils between the ages of two and 19, including a hydrotherapy pool for swimming therapy programmes.
The replacement leisure complex comprises a sports hall, a fitness suite, a multi-use hall, changing facilities and a social area, all of which are available for secondary school and wider community use.
The project, rated as BREEAM ‘Very Good’, was completed in two phases: the construction of the new schools and leisure facilities, and following this, the demolition of the old leisure centre.
To ensure the community was engaged throughout the project, a dedicated microsite was produced to keep people updated with project progress and engagement events.
The team also hosted an event as part of Open Doors Day 2017, inviting members of the local community onsite for the day to learn about the project and the jobs available in the construction industry.
Several apprenticeship and trainee placements were coordinated as part of the project.
These included a BTEC construction student who joined us to learn more about project management and engineering tasks; and a team member who began on site as a directly employed labourer, but whose performance and approach led the team to engage TrAC (an apprenticeships organisation) and enrol him on a full apprenticeship. The team member remained on site full time and secured a full time apprenticeship position, progressing to study an HND, all supported by Morgan Sindall Construction.
With the site located in the middle of the fens and extensively saturated, large plant and equipment needed for groundworks couldn’t navigate onto the site. To overcome this, we designed a host of specialist band drains, with a 10-12m deep sock – this gave easy passage for the excess water to pass deep into the ground. Coupling this with extensive stone fill across the site, water was safely diverted into the surrounding dykes, enabling groundworks to progress on time.
"It's no exaggeration to say that Morgan Sindall Construction have been absolutely fantastic throughout the whole project. What I love about them is they're solution orientated -they'll always find a way. As a customer I've never heard them say no. I love that they're so focussed on safety, both for the people who worked here, and for us when we moved in, and I love the fact they finished on time, and they said it all along. I'd wholeheartedly recommend them!" Scott Gaskins
Head of School, Littleport and East Cambridgeshire Academy