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Double delight at London school build

Castlecombe Primary School, in Mottingham, has completed a half-form entry expansion ahead of programme and under budget

Posted by Julian Owen | August 17, 2018 | Bricks & mortar

The recently completed expansion at South East London's Castlecombe Primary School was designed by Pellings, an integrated design, property and construction consultancy.

Construction started in June 2017 and the school took occupation in May 2018, providing places for a further 120 pupils. The project represents the first phase of what will eventually be a full one form entry expansion.

Because the school is in Metropolitan Open Land, planning consent was given on the proviso that there was no further incursion of buildings onto the site. This meant creating a second floor on the existing school footprint by demolishing a toilet area and external covered storage, and building over existing classrooms to create a total of four new ones. 

The building expansion was designed to be sympathetic to the 1990s original, but with a castle theme providing castle keystones above the window heads. The new structure comprises a steel frame with a Metsec steel framing system and, continuing the castle theme, the provision of decorative brick bands using materials matching those of the existing building. The roof is pitched timber and the windows in keeping with the original style. 

Councillor Peter Fortune, Bromley’s Executive Member for Children, Education and Families, said: “The expansion of Castlecombe School in Mottingham went extremely well and the resulting addition of up to 120 extra school places means that we can offer every pupil at Dorset Road Infants School a junior school place at the school, if they would like it. This is part of a programme of expansion that has seen 960 temporary and 2,200 permanent school places created since September 2014. I wish all the children at Castlecombe now and in the future, the very happiest of school days.” 

Philip Baldock, Senior Associate Building Surveyor at Pellings: “This project was completed early and under budget because a great level of trust was created between us, the design and build contractor Neilcott, the school and the client, the London Borough of Bromley. 

“This was achieved through robust tender documents which clearly set out the employers’ requirements and ensured that provisions were allowed in the budget for items that could be problematic, like drainage, ground conditions and unforeseen structural works to existing buildings, together with a general contingency.

“In addition, Pellings was responsible for liaising with the contractor on their RIBA Stage 4 design to ensure they met the employers’ requirements, as well as responding to the contractor’s requests for information in a timely manner.”


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