• 21 March 2022
  • People, Communities,

Ten pupils from Dame Allan’s Junior School have been given a behind the scenes tour of a live construction site. The site visit was part of a group-wide initiative by contractor Tolent to increase awareness of the construction industry in association with National Careers Week.

The project, known as the North End Development, will provide state-of-the art facilities for the senior school’s arts, sciences and modern languages departments with completed works providing 16 new classrooms, modern exhibitions spaces and laboratories through a two-storey extension to the school’s existing campus in Fenham.

The development will also create a new sixth form area within design and technology, and multiple offices. Externally, it will feature a living wall on the north side of the school and electric charging points for vehicles enhancing the project’s biodiversity and sustainability credentials.

The children, who will be among the first to benefit from the state-of-the-art facilities when they transfer to the senior school in September, were given a full site induction and tour by the site’s project manager.

In addition to learning about the construction techniques being used and the importance of health and safety on site, the children also learnt about the variety of career opportunities available in the construction industry, nurturing the workforce of the future.

Tolent’s Site Manager, Glyn Pallister, said: “Now the steel structure is complete, it is a great time for the children to see the skeleton of the building and learn about how it is being constructed.

“We are currently working on roof steels and drainage, then over the coming weeks we will be getting the building envelope up and the project will look different again.”

Dressed in high-vis jackets, hard hats and gloves, the pupils had a walk around the perimeter of the construction site. Luca said: “I’m most excited about the new science labs because I think they will be really exciting to use.”

Junior School Headteacher, Geoff Laidler, who accompanied the pupils on the tour, said: “It’s been really exciting for the children to see first-hand how the new facilities are transforming, and to learn how this fantastic new building is being constructed.

“These pupils are going to benefit from this incredible space in the years ahead, so getting them involved in its creation is really special, and particularly timely during National Careers Week.”

Principal of Dame Allan’s Schools, Will Scott, said: “The project is moving at a great pace and now the steels are up we are really seeing the building take shape. This is such a significant and exciting development in the history of the Schools, and it’s nice to see how enthusiastic our younger pupils are about using it when they join the Senior School in September.”

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