Project comes weeks after company started build of nearby leisure centre
Willmott Dixon has added to its workload in Winchester by securing a £8.35 million contract from Hampshire County Council to build Barton Farm Academy, the town’s first primary academy school.
The company recently started on site with the new Winchester Sport and Leisure Park to replace the River Park Leisure Centre and now adds to that presence in the town with its role to build the 420 place academy for children aged 4-11 at the Kings Barton housing development site.
The single storey two-form entry school features a main hall, holistic music and drama studio, ‘discovery point’ library, staff room and workspace, administration offices and parent waiting rooms. The decision to have the school was in response to 2,000 new homes being built on the Barton Farm site so creating a need for further school places. The school will target a BREEAM Excellent energy efficiency rating to provide a sustainable learning environment when it opens in September 2020.
The academy sponsor is the University of Winchester and Professor Joy Carter CBE, DL, Vice-Chancellor of the University and Chair of the University of Winchester Academy Trust, which will run the school, said: “The University is an outstanding provider of teacher education and has a strong track record of raising aspiration among young people.”
“Pupils at the school will benefit from our values-driven ethos, extensive regional school partnerships, our evidence-based learning and teaching, our powerful links with local business and community organisations, and our passionate commitment to social justice and sustainability. The innovative Academy buildings, including state-of-the-art indoor and outdoor learning environments, will also meet our very high standards for sustainability.”
The University of Winchester was approved as an academy sponsor by the Department of Education in 2014. Nicola Wells, head teacher designate of the new school said: “I am thrilled to be at the ground breaking ceremony as the first custodian of this beautiful, state of the art setting. I have designed a curriculum to take full advantage of our extensive indoor and outdoor spaces and, as the first head teacher of the Academy, it is my aim to provide an inspirational and joyful primary school experience for all of our pupils.”
Barton Farm Academy has been designed by Hampshire County Council’s in-house team of architects and landscape designers and meets the highest standards for environmental sustainability and will provide inspiring and creative learning spaces for children to flourish. The new school forms part of the County Council investment in new school places across Hampshire.
Richard Poulter, managing director of Willmott Dixon in the Central South :
“Willmott Dixon is delighted to be involved in this project. The new school will provide much-needed inspirational learning spaces. We are always delighted to play a part in supporting the learning of the next generation. As will all our projects we aim to leave a positive legacy in the local community and are targeting 140 apprenticeship weeks on the project.”