New Kingsbrook secondary school takes major step towards opening

Cllr Zahir Mohammed, Chairman of Buckinghamshire Council signing the steelwork at Kingsbrook Secondary

Buckinghamshire Council and construction company Morgan Sindall celebrated a key milestone in the construction of the new multi-million-pound secondary school on the Kingsbrook development near Aylesbury, with a traditional topping out ceremony this week.

Councillor Zahir Mohammed, Chairman of Buckinghamshire Council, and David Rowsell, Area Director from Morgan Sindall, symbolically signed the steelwork on the last section of the roof on the school, at a special celebratory ceremony which marked reaching the highest point of the building.

Building of the school has been funded from the national Housing Infrastructure Fund (HIF), Section 106 developer contributions, and from Government Basic Need funding.

Anita Cranmer, Cabinet Member for Education and Children’s Services said: “This is a much needed 1,080 place secondary school on the Kingsbrook development and will include a 32 place Special Educational Needs unit. The aim is to open the new school for the autumn term in September 2022 to meet the rising demand from housing growth across the town. I hope the pupils, teachers, staff and local community will enjoy the new facilities for many years to come.”

The project is being developed through a strong partnership with our main contractor, Morgan Sindall, the developer, Barratt David Wilson Homes, the Academy Sponsor, Insignis Academy Trust, project managers and cost consultants Mace and a design team led by ADP Architects. Buckinghamshire Council’s Schools Commissioning and Property and Assets Teams are leading on this project on behalf of the Council.

Councillor John Chilver, Cabinet Member for Property said: “The new school building has strong environmental credentials to help minimise the carbon footprint of the school. It has heating and hot water that will be carbon neutral delivered via high efficiency air-source heat pumps. The PV panels on the roof area will generating approximately 28,600 kwh/year. The building will achieve the highest Energy Performance Certificate rating of ‘A’. The design of the building has also reduced embodied carbon emissions by use of timber framed structural insulated panels that are used for all areas of external wall build-up.”

David Rowsell, area director at Morgan Sindall Construction, said: “This ceremony really highlighted the fantastic partnership that we’ve built up with Buckinghamshire Council. Not only are we currently delivering Kingsbrook Secondary School, a key scheme procured through the Southern Construction Framework, but we’ve also been involved on three other projects with them in recent years. In addition, we really strengthened our ability to deliver huge social value in the area during this project by opening an onsite knowledge quad alongside a long list of stakeholders invested in local education, skills and jobs development.

Thanks to this collaborative relationship with Buckinghamshire Council, which shares our commitment to green, community-centred values, we’ve been able to develop a design that is at the cutting edge of sustainable construction. To reduce the building’s carbon footprint, we utilised our CarboniCa carbon calculation tool, resulting in a highly energy efficient building with low levels of embodied carbon. Innovative construction techniques and materials have also been implemented, including offsite construction, a highly sustainable timber façade and MEP service modules.”

Paul Ahdal, Head of Infrastructure Grants Project Management at Homes England, said: “Building a new, much-needed secondary school is an integral part of our investment into Aylesbury and its future. Through the Housing Infrastructure Fund the government is supporting Aylesbury’s growth though vital infrastructure that will help promote sustainable development. This week’s topping out ceremony marks an exciting milestone in these works.”

Jo Alden, Technical Director at Barratt North Thames, comments: “We were delighted to be able to deliver the land required to enable construction of the secondary school to start three years ahead of schedule. This is a direct result of our partnership with Buckinghamshire Council and their contracting partner, Morgan Sindall. As we continue to build new communities at Kingsbrook, we are proud to see new facilities begin to open, which will benefit residents and those living in the surrounding area. We are looking forward to seeing the school officially open next September, and to work with the pupils and teachers on a variety of community activities in the years that follow.”