2007 – the present day.
The journey to our new school.
We had plans in 2006 and again in 2007 for our new school under the BSF (Building Schools for the Future) programme before we reached plans for the one that is now to be built.
In 2006 three sets of plans were drawn up and shown to staff for discussion. Lots of meetings were held and opinions sought, leading to a Vision Statement and Learning Brief being compiled for submission to the Local Authority. This is one of the suggested site layout plans:-
- Compact plan making use of central courtyard.
- Vehicle access/servicing along east edge (wall needs repairing).
- Parking at rear of site.
- New buildings pushed to front of site, creating an impact on Eltham Hill.
Site investigation in February 2007.
April 2007 we had detailed plans. These plans said that “The buildings will be inspiring and contemporary to reflect the activities and aspirations of the school – it’s technology specialism; it’s sustainable agenda; open & accessible and non-institutional. Buildings have been designed to respond to their context – in particular the listed structures and the original 1920s school.” (from the Hawkins\Brown plans of April 2007)
This picture gives an idea of the visual impact on Eltham Hill of the new blocks.
A newsletter was sent to parents in July 2007, the information about sustainability is taken from it.
Our new buildings will be more energy efficient by using:-
- Improved building method and materials.
- A wood chip boiler.
- A green roof covered with sedum.
- Water saving tap sensors
- Light sensors
- Heat recovery ventilation and a highly efficient cooling plant.
By March 2008 we were expecting work to begin in the summer of that year. Initially this would have been to build a fully functioning temporary school on the playing field. This was intended to ensure that the College could continue educating the students with minimum disruption while the new building was being constructed.
In September 2008 we opened Eltham Hill Xtra on the King’s Park Site.
Having one Year Group each day on the King’s Park Site relieves pressure on the main site during the building programme, and gives students the opportunity to access the National Curriculum through innovative approaches to teaching.
In January 2010 we thought that everything was going ahead; work was scheduled to start in November 2010. We were no longer having a temporary school on the playing field, but instead the site would be sectioned so that building work could go on in one area while the school continues to function with minimum disruption in the other. The school had to be totally redesigned – a massive task. However our plans were then subject to another delay while the whole BSF programme was re-examined by Government. By July 2010 we were relieved to know that our school was among those whose building scheme would continue.
Summary of final plans.
- The new building will accommodate 150 post-16 pupils and six forms of entry for all other year groups.
- The original 1920s building will be refurbished.
- 78% of the building will be new buildings and 22% refurbishment (approximately)
- There will be a phased decant over 2.5 years, using the Eltham Hill Xtra site, to minimize disruption to teaching and learning.
- Hoardings will go up during the Christmas holidays 2010 and it is expected that the new Reception will be put in place by February 2011; building work will start soon thereafter.
The new block was completed in August 2012, here are a few photos of the build as it progressed:-
After a massive job of packing equipment etc into a vast numbers of large blue boxes the school moved into the new block in September 2012. These boxes had to be rapidly unpacked to allow the new term to start fully resourced.
Refurbishment of the original block was completed in 2013, here are a few photos of the work in progress:-
Throughout the entire build the Van Dyke Building was protected and now forms part of the entrance area to the new school.
The school was flooded in January 2013 and we were unable to use the ground floor. After a massive drying operation everything was rapidly back to normal. The new school opened completely in September 2013 and now includes a Sixth Form offering both A Levels and International Baccalaureate.
The school was officially opened by Baroness Lawrence of Clarendon OBE on 22nd October 2014.