Morgan Sindall Construction is making good progress on works to deliver a new 420 place primary school in the heart of the growing Westvale Park estate in Horley for Surrey County Council.
The contractor was appointed to the £8.58 million contract to deliver Westvale Park Primary Academy via the Orbis Framework creating new school places for children across the town. A minimum of 80% of the project value will be invested as social value, enriching the local community and regional economy.
The Westvale Park estate is entering its third phase of development and will include 1,570 homes, a primary school, community hall, shops, a site for a place of worship, a medical centre, a pub or restaurant and employment space when it completes in 2025.
Westvale Park Primary Academy will provide school places for the growing estate and ease pressure on schools in the wider Horley area, providing a much-needed new facility for the community. The new two-storey school will be centrally located and will also feature a dual-use recreation area that can be used by the community outside school hours. The school will be run by Aurora Academies Trust, which currently operates six schools in the South East.
The school will be constructed using a bespoke Streif closed modular panel system. The flexible, sustainable, and efficient system will deliver an outstanding school building and significantly minimise disruption to neighbours and the local community – cutting down the need for large scale vehicle deliveries to site by around 85%.
Creating social value within communities is a key priority for Morgan Sindall Construction and the project will have a significant positive impact on the local and regional economy. The project team is also building economic resilience within the local community - using their knowledge on the project to provide unique opportunities for local people to source employment and develop skills in the construction sector and creating valuable training opportunities.
Over 78% of the company’s supply chain on the project is made up of SMEs, microbusinesses and social enterprises, and the Morgan Sindall Construction team is committed to supporting local SMEs, including start-ups or volunteer sector organisations, with professional skills support in any of HR, finance, project management and training.
The team is engaging with local charities to create a permanent legacy within the community and has pledged to commit a minimum of 120 volunteering hours during the lifetime of the project. The project team is engaging with Surrey Wildlife Trust and Surrey Hill Trust to support and assist projects such as landscape conservation to protect and preserve the local environment.
Guy Hannell, area director for Morgan Sindall Construction, said: “Westvale Park is an exciting new neighbourhood, providing much-needed homes and amenities for this popular area. We’re very pleased to have been appointed to construct the new primary school and to be making solid progress as we work to create these essential school places for children within the local community.
“Building sustainable communities and creating real social value is at the heart of our operational strategy. At our Westvale Park Primary project we have committed to delivering social value over the life of the scheme through employing local businesses, delivering training, and creating new jobs and opportunities for people living locally.
“Working in collaboration with Surrey County Council and our project partners, we look forward to delivering an outstanding school at Westvale Park, and creating a positive legacy within local community that will live on long beyond the completion of works.”
Morgan Sindall Construction is also working with its supply chain to engage and recruit local young people in appropriate project-based apprentice roles, and is planning to provide work placements to undergraduates and graduates on the project. The team is working with Job Centre Plus offices in Redhill, Crawley and East Sussex Colleges and local specialist organisations to engage with candidates from the immediate area. While a collaboration with TRaC Shared Apprentice Scheme (SAS) is in place to enable the team to work with apprentices in the supply chain where required and support them through their qualifications.
Tim McCarthy, CEO of Aurora Academies Trust said: “Aurora is delighted to have been selected by Surrey County Council to run this new school and we are looking forward to bringing our expertise to the Westvale Park community. In particular, we will instil Aurora’s nationally renowned Foundation Village approach to our early years setting, which means that children get off to a flying start to school leading to long-term educational success.”
Head of School, Susan Kelly added: “Even before we open our doors in September, Westvale Park has already proven to be very popular – we have only a few places left for our two Reception classes and our nursery provision is full, with a waiting list. It is clear that the community shares our excitement and we look forward to welcoming our founding children… for all of us it is a case of onwards and upwards!”
Since being on site, the project team is already getting to know their neighbours, and has installed a dog waste and water station to provide a little respite for furry friends, while a bird and bug house has also been installed by the team to support local wildlife.
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