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Completion of refurbishment project for Stafford school relocation by GF Tomlinson

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St Leonard’s Primary School in Stafford is celebrating the completion of its relocation, which will have the capacity for future expansion.

The £4m project was delivered by Midlands-based contractor G F Tomlinson and architect and project manager Entrust, for Staffordshire County Council.

Pupils and staff from St Leonard’s have now moved from their outgrown Victorian building on St. Leonard’s Avenue, to their new larger site at the former Kingston Centre, which is a five-minute walk from its previous location. The move will allow the school to meet the demand for additional school places from the new housing developments in the area.

The former Kingston Centre has been fully remodelled and refurbished to create a modern, sustainable, and comfortable learning environment, and having previously been a school from 1939 when it was first built to 1988, it has brought the site back to its original intended use.

Facilities at the new St Leonard’s Primary School include contemporary teaching spaces and onsite extensive outdoor playing provision - having previously only had off-site outdoor facilities. There is also the option to add further buildings in the future.

From the initial planning phase of the school, sustainability has been integral to its design and operation. G F Tomlinson installed air source heat pumps, photovoltaic panels, and hybrid heating/cooling air handling units, as well as replacing the existing ceilings with insulated thermal storage panels in order to reduce the carbon footprint of the building.

99% of waste from the site was recycled and 4.7 tonnes of waste re-used through the contractor’s partnership with social enterprise Community Wood Recycling. 80 trees were planted in the new grounds at the start of the works which were donated by The Woodland Trust - enhancing the ecology of the site to attract insects and animals.

Over £100,000 of social value added has been delivered during the remodelling and refurbishment process, which includes G F Tomlinson providing 22 weeks of onsite learning for apprentices and tours of the new school site for its teachers and pupils.

Staffordshire County Council Cabinet Member for Education Jonathan Price, said: “With the increased demand for school places in the Stafford area, and with St Leonard’s outgrowing their previous site, it was important for us to be able to deliver a modern, spacious school that would provide pupils with the best possible education and learning environment.

“This £4 million site has the capacity to accommodate nearly 200 extra pupils and contains state-of-the-art facilities, meaning the school is fit for the future. It has been extremely gratifying to watch the school take shape over the last few months, and I’m sure St Leonard’s pupils will grow and thrive in their new environment.”

The works to St Leonard’s Primary School were delivered under the Constructing West Midlands (CWM) Framework and is the seventh school G F Tomlinson has delivered for Staffordshire County Council to date, with the most recent being the Anna Seward Primary School in Lichfield.

Chris Flint, Managing Director at G F Tomlinson, said: The new St Leonard’s Primary School provides sustainable, state-of-the-art facilities for its pupils to thrive in, and we are proud to have been involved in creating the much-needed additional school places for families in the area.

“Having moved from a location they had outgrown, it has been a pleasure working closely with the school, Staffordshire County Council and Entrust to deliver a modern and future poof education facility that will provide enhanced learning.

“Our commitment to social value continues to be at the forefront of all the projects that we deliver, and we’re pleased to have created opportunities for apprentices on this project.”

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