Planning Go Ahead for £32m Upgrade of Richmond School

Sean Lockie
The Leeds offices of multi-disciplinary consultants, Atkins, and its subsidiary, project management and cost consultants, Faithful+Gould, are celebrating after successfully securing planning consent* for the £32million upgrade of Richmond School.

Working on behalf of North Yorkshire County Council (NYCC), acting as project architect, Atkins' highly innovative, sustainable design concept to create a new sports hall, link a new build extension with the existing Grade two Listed teaching block, and carry out a major refurbishment of the middle school will turn the completed project into an exemplar building, bringing the school into the 21st century.

In addition to providing full architectural services on the project, Atkins’ teams will also deliver mechanical and electrical and civil and structural services.

Justin Lunn, head of design at Atkins Leeds, said:

"One of the main challenges we have faced so far is to match the high design quality of the existing 1940s Listed building - which was formerly used as teaching spaces - into a cutting edge sixth form centre. We are confident that the innovative design solutions we have developed will bring Richmond School into a league of its own. Collaborating with Faithful+Gould and such a forward thinking and supportive client as North Yorkshire County Council will make Richmond School a very enjoyable project to work on."

Currently producing contract documentation and procurement information following interviews to appoint the contractor, Faithful+Gould's team will provide complete project management, quantity surveying and planning supervisory services to ensure the project is delivered in a timely fashion while remaining on budget.

Dave Reynolds, Faithful+Gould's sustainability co-ordinator, said:

"We are delighted that planning has been granted on the scheme and we will now be moving onto a significant stage in the development of the project which will see a team based within the school being established. This will foster enhanced communications and queries during the build process can be answered instantly rather than through a longer process, as can happen in large projects."

A major feature of the school’s sustainable design is the targeted 20 per cent reduction of carbon dioxide emissions from the use of fossil fuels and grid supplied electricity which will be assisted by the installation of sophisticated multiple metering.

In addition to monitoring the amount of energy used, these meters will allow students to interface with the technology by reviewing the live consumption data they supply. They can then use this information to take any action that may be required to make further improvements for energy savings.

Richard Allen, strategic planning manager with North Yorkshire County Council, said:

"The priorities are not only to enhance the educational performance of the school and opportunities for its students, but also to provide facilities that enhance opportunities for the local community in the areas of sport, drama, community education and youth services".

Included in the wide range of renewable energy features to be built into the school are wind turbines and solar panels to provide power, biomass boilers, ground source heat pumps, and a metallic curtain walling system.

Twenty per cent of the school’s energy will come from renewable sources, and local authorities throughout the UK will be invited to use Richmond as a model for sustainability under the Department for Education and Skills Single School Pathfinder Programme.

*The planning application has been granted subject to a Listed building notice being issued.