calfordseaden was commissioned on this new build cutting edge upper college providing work based learning opportunities as well as traditional academic general teaching spaces for those aged between 14 to 19.

The floor area is approximately 7,000 sqm, consisting of a steel framed structure with a mixture of cladding styles, high quality finishes.

The college building is set in extensive landscaped grounds incorporating newly laid grass and synthetic sports pitches. calfordseaden was required to reconcile two quite different educational visions, one emanating from a conventional secondary school and the other from an independent vocational training provider. We helped the design team to interpret these visions to create a unique nationally recognised bespoke training facility providing both academic and vocational training opportunities.

The vocational learning spaces include a construction workshop offering training in bricklaying, painting and decorating, engineering, joinery and carpentry, as well as hair and beauty studios and state of the art science laboratories.

Despite main contractor insolvency issues, we ensured that the project was strictly managed resulting in the building contract being delivered on time, within budget and to the desired design standards.

The development also considers the importance of renewable energy with the inclusion high quality finished thought and Ground Source Heat Pumps which supply the building with over half its energy needs.

The scheme attracted the media’s attention when Ed Miliband and Ed Balls visited the campus to meet with students and local businesses to launch Labour’s five point plan for jobs.