Ingleton Wood joined Southend MP Sir David Amess at a symbolic groundbreaking ceremony recently that saw the start of year-long building project at Southend’s Chase High School.
Also present were senior teachers and builders, Davis Construction, at the site that will see a whole new teaching block built.
Once complete there will be a new three-storey classroom block, new netball courts, a car park as well as fully refurbished science areas and main reception.
Sir David said: “I am delighted to attend the groundbreaking ceremony. The three-storey building will be a great asset to the school but more importantly, it will provide a fresh environment and extra space in which our children can learn.
“I would like to commend the work of everyone involved in this project and I join with the school’s staff and students in looking forward to its completion in 2020.”
There are 1,017 students at the school, but the new year block means that will increase to 1,330 pupils by September 2024.
Ingleton Wood took the proposals successfully through planning permission and will be overseeing the project through to completion.
Chase High School is part of the Brentwood Academies Trust and head teacher of the school, Andrew James, said: “It really will transform the school. We can’t wait to see the final result. This is a great opportunity to provide an updated suite of rooms for our humanities subjects such as geography, history, RE and sociology.
“Ingleton Wood’s experience in working with schools is hugely appreciated. They have a strong portfolio of successful projects in other schools, which has clearly benefitted the staff and pupils there.
“They understand the educational context and bring a pragmatic approach to the work, which makes a big difference to the day-to-day experience of everyone involved.”
Chris Mabbutt, a director at Ingleton Wood, said: “We work with many schools and have a great track record in this field. We know what it takes to work on sites such as these.
“We have designed a building that is in keeping with the sixth-form classrooms nearby but with improved energy efficiency, greater use of space and providing the best value for money.”
The project is being funded by Southend Borough Council to ensure sufficient capacity across the area’s secondary schools to cope with the pupil-number bulge in primary schools, as well as the council’s commitment to build extra homes in the district in the coming years.
Tom Davis, managing director of Davis Construction, said “We have a specialist knowledge of construction in the Education sector and feel it is important to work closely with the school involved, via open lines of communication throughout each and every stage of the project. Hence why we were keen to mark the occasion right from the start!”
Chase High School head teacher (holding the spade), with Sir David Amess (right of Mr James) are flanked by school staff, and professionals from Ingleton Wood and Davis Construction