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Darley Bank Student Accommodation Kitchen

Darley Bank & Peak Court Refurbishment

Students at the University of Derby can now enjoy improved accommodation facilities at Darley Bank and Peak Court following its refurbishment by Morgan Sindall Construction. Faced with a tight eight-week programme to deliver the works, the project completed on time, on budget and with a client satisfaction score of 10/10. Procured through the SCAPE National Construction Framework, the site team also worked closely with the university to deliver a social and economic boost to the local community.

Key Stats

  • On time and budget
  • 10/10 client satisfaction
  • 94% SME spend
  • 67.6% local labour (<20 miles)
  • £1m Social Value (52.6% of project value)
  • 100% waste diverted
  • 54hrs and £1.8k donated to community
  • 4 Social Enterprise appointed
  • Zero RIDDOR accidents
  • 8-week duration

At a Glance


University of Derby




Sept 2022




SCAPE National Construction


Education/ Student Accommodation

Social value



100% waste diverted

Our Approach

The scope of work included the renovation of 117 bedrooms, 22 kitchens and all associated communal areas over an eight-week period. It also involved improving the fire prevention, water heating and M&E systems throughout both buildings.

To help manage the work and keep the programme on track, the client and site teams carefully planned the subcontractors and sequence of works. This included a phased delivery approach, with a floor being handed over to the client each week. As well as providing greater time and cost certainties, this approach allowed the site team to identify and resolve any snagging in a timely manner – which ultimately resulted in the project handing over defect free. It also provided early access to inspect and prepare the rooms in time for the returning students starting the new September term.

With both accommodation buildings located less than 100 metres apart, the project was able to benefit from a shared and central site office and project team. The team also worked closely with the university’s estate team and appointed architect practice, Lungfish Architects, to ensure the work was completed to the highest standards, with the project receiving a quality score of 9/10 from the client.

Enhancing Communities

Morgan Sindall has long recognised the importance of Social Value with its Intelligent Solutions approach seeking to create unique, sustainable, and inspiring places. Following its appointment on the SCAPE National Construction Framework, the contractor pledged to achieve a minimum of 30% return on Social Value on all its SCAPE projects. The site team at Darley Bank and Peak Court exceeded this even further however by achieving an impressive 52.6% return, ensuring more than £1 million of the project spend was reinvested within the local area.

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Creating Social Value at Darley Bank & Peak Court

This was accomplished, in part, by ensuring the workforce and subcontractors used on site were from the surrounding area. In total, 67.8% of the labour was based within 20 miles of the project, while 88.3% of the project value was spent with small to medium businesses in the local area. Four Social Enterprises – whose primary purposes are to try to readdress social or environmental imbalances within the construction industry – were also appointed on the project.

Looking to go beyond the build, the project team also collected items for a food bank and hosted a Harvest Breakfast Community Engagement Event in partnership with the local church and the University of Derby. The event invited anyone in the local area who was in need and provided them with a hot meal/drink as well as suitable clothing and sleeping bags for the colder months.

University of Derby - Food Bank

SCAPE is an approved route to market that enables us to access Tier 1 contractors. The mechanisms of the framework enabled us to utilise the expertise of Morgan Sindall on this project from inception through to completion. From the initial design and planning of the work, to budgeting, right the way through to the completion of the works, the collaborative nature of all parties working together was the key to meeting both the budget and the constrained timeframes.
Ross Hughes, interim senior project manager at the University of Derby
It's great that we were able to make a such positive impact on the community with this eight-week project - a relatively short space of time in the world of construction. Collaboration with the client and our subcontractors was the key to success here and I’d like to take this opportunity to commend the hard work and planning which went into this development, and we will use this example to help shape future social value initiatives.
Richard Fielding, Area Director at Morgan Sindall Construction
We worked closely with the University of Derby and Morgan Sindall to establish a clear brief and scope of works which centred on enhancing the accommodation facilities for the benefit of its students. Utilising Morgan Sindall’s supply chain, we achieved a safe, bright and vibrant design, bringing the interior up to modern standards, which creates an ideal home from home for its residents.
Craig Taylor, Director at Lungfish Architects
We are delighted to have supported our partner, Morgan Sindall, the delivery of this project in just eight weeks. This scheme is a prime example of how effective collaboration between partners and the supply chain is critical to ensuring the complex and multi-layered requirements of our clients are met successfully, to budget and on time.
Mark Robinson, group chief executive at SCAPE


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