New Sheffield school wins top construction award

Woolley Wood School head Dean Linkhorn in the Sensory Room.
Woolley Wood School head Dean Linkhorn in the Sensory Room.
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A PROJECT to unite two Sheffield schools on the same site has won a prestigious regional award from the construction industry.

The work to move Woolley Wood Special School onto the same site as Mansel Primary at Parson Cross was completed earlier this year.

Kier Sheffield, the contractor in charge of the scheme, has now won the project of the year title at the Yorkshire and Humber construction best practice awards, held in Leeds.

The Kier team will now be entered for the national awards, to be announced in London later this month.

The project impressed judges who praised the creation of Woolley Wood, which is now a state-of-the-art school for pupils with a range of special needs.

The move to relocate the school, previously based in Shiregreen, was coupled with work to refurbish Mansel and bring both sets of children closer together.

The new Woolley Wood has many design features specific to the needs of disabled children, including a hydrotherapy pool, an interactive sensory room and special bathroom areas, all with continuous ceiling hoists to connect them to classrooms.

The project, which began two years ago in partnership with Sheffield Council, was completed in March, three weeks ahead of schedule.

Simon Bullen, Kier regional managing director for maintenance, said: “Providing high-quality facilities to pupils of all abilities is a great privilege and we are proud to gain industry recognition for a project that will bring benefits to children for generations to come.”

The new building also has a range of environmental features, reducing carbon emissions by 30 per cent.

Coun Jackie Drayton, Cabinet member for children, young people and families, said: “Sheffield children deserve to be taught in modern high standard buildings.

“This project is a great example of how we’re transforming learning environments for our current and future generations of pupils, catering for their needs, and inspiring them to do the best they can.”

n ARCHITECTS responsible for Sheffield’s newest secondary school have scooped a regional award from the Yorkshire branch of the Institution of Structural Engineers.

Mott MacDonald was awarded first prize at the institution’s annual awards, for its work on Forge Valley Community School, Stannington.

The school opened in September 2011, after Myers Grove School merged with Wisewood School.

The environmentally-friendly building was designed with open-plan spaces, different to traditional classrooms.

The institution hailed the school as an ‘innovative structure, which acts as an inspirational location for learning’.