In 2021, Barling Magna Primary Academy was facing a dilemma. The school wanted to provide full form entry to benefit the local community but didn’t have enough space for thirty additional pupils for each year group. The leadership team submitted planning for much-needed extensions at their site, but progress on these projects stalled during Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic.

In conjunction with Essex County Council and Real8, A.W. Hardy were awarded the design and build contract.

The build

The single storey extension was comprised of a traditional brickwork and blockwork structure built on shallow foundations. We provided:

  • Three SEN rooms, including a therapy room, group room, and resource base
  • A new staffroom
  • New meeting rooms
  • A refurbished reception area
  • New toilets in the reception block, including a disabled facility
  • Upgrades to all the admin rooms onsite

The lower facing brickwork matched the main school’s exterior, and the upper levels were clad in vertical cedar cladding. We incorporated a low-pitched roof into the design so that solar panels could be installed to help offset energy costs after the build.

Additional project elements

Aside from delivering much-needed educational facilities, we also constructed a new bike shed at the front of the school, renewed the external surfacing on the playground, and created a car park. We collaborated with local utility companies to extend and upgrade the mains supplies and had to make allowances for an additional drainage provision. All works were carried out to ensure a safe environment for staff and pupils and minimal disruption to the school’s day-to-day activities.

The project was completed in January 2023.