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Morgan Sindall appointed to create state-of-the-art school in Pontefract

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Morgan Sindall has been appointed by the Department for Education (DfE) to deliver the redevelopment of Carleton High School in Pontefract, Wakefield on behalf of Pontefract Academies Trust.

Funded by DfE’s School Rebuilding Programme, Morgan Sindall will deliver the part redevelopment of the school, including: part demolition, the erection of a new three storey teaching building and two external canopies. There will also be the refurbishment of the existing sports hall, reconfiguration of external sports provision and installation of new multi-use games area. Morgan Sindall will also undertake the provision of photovoltaic panels and associated landscaping.

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To mark the start of work, Morgan Sindall hosted a groundbreaking ceremony alongside a number of key stakeholders. Attendees included Ben Hall, Area Director, Morgan Sindall; Nick Theos, Project Manager, Morgan Sindall; John Milburn, Project Director, DfE; Shaheen Shariff, Headteacher, Carleton High School; Richard Amery, Chair of School Performance Review Board; Pontefract Academies Trust and Julian Appleyard OBE, Chief Executive Officer, Pontefract Academies Trust.

All buildings in the School Rebuilding Programme are built to DfE technical specification and standards, designed to be Net Zero Carbon in Operation (NZCiO) in operation and be more resilient to the effects of climate change.

The new building will provide modern facilities to support a high-quality education for current and future students. Students will have access to modern classrooms and science labs, creative technology spaces and high spec computing suites. Sporting facilities will also be enhanced by a new multi-use games area.

The £19m project will see the new building developed on the school’s existing tennis courts, minimising disruption for pupils and staff. The project will also see the removal of old buildings and landscaping of the site, with all work expected to complete by early 2026.

Throughout the build programme, Morgan Sindall will deploy its Intelligent Solutions approach to bring together digital and platform design with modern construction methods and innovative carbon reduction tools to create inspiring new facilities for students.

The BIM Level 2 project will utilise project management tool BIM 360 and the use of Oculo - a digital construction solution that combines hard-hat cameras, BIM models/floorplans & artificial intelligence - will be implemented to monitor and control the quality of works.

Air source heat pumps are being used in the school’s heating systems, while photovoltaic panels are being used on canopies and the building’s roofs, including a biosolar green roof. There will also be employment and training opportunities created within the project, as well as targeted social value programmes to cater for the needs of the local community.

Morgan Sindall has already recruited for three T-level placements to date and is underway with recruitment of a further four, working with Wakefield and Barnsley Colleges. In addition, the contractor will be running a programme of career engagement activity including fortnightly site visits, work experience, mock interview practice, apprenticeship talks and a biodiversity volunteering project in the community that will seek to involve students.

Nick Theos, Project Manager, Morgan Sindall Construction said:

As a local business, we understand how much this development is required and the important role it will play for Pontefract and Wakefield. We are excited to get started and engage with the local community to ensure that this school supports them for many generations to come.”

Julian Appleyard OBE, Chief Executive Officer, Pontefract Academies Trust commented:

As we break ground on the redevelopment of Carleton High School, Pontefract Academies Trust are delighted to partner with Morgan Sindall. This project signifies our dedication to providing an exceptional educational environment for our students. With this state-of-the-art facility, we are laying the foundation for a brighter future, one where excellence in education is paramount.”