Parklands Educate Together Primary School, Weston-super-Mare, Somerset
The Parklands Educate Together Primary School, in Weston-super-Mare, was required to meet the needs of staff, pupils and the local community. The 420-place primary and nursery - built on the former RAF Locking base and surrounding land - was part of North Somerset Council’s £40 million investment into the Weston villages.
Perfect Circle was appointed by the council to provide cost management and quantity surveying (QS) services for the project, which was accelerated by SCAPE Consultancy, a direct award framework that drives collaboration, efficiency, time and cost savings.
The school needed to comprise 14 modern classrooms, a multi-use games area, main hall, hard and soft informal play areas, and a habitat area for 420 primary school children, as well as a self-contained pre-school, with capacity to expand to 630 places when required.
A temporary building to house pupils from the new, nearby housing development was also required in September 2018. Another provisional building needed to be added a year later to expand the school to four classrooms - ahead of the permanent site opening in September 2020.
Part of the construction took place during the height of the coronavirus pandemic in the UK when numerous restrictions were in place - meaning the team was uncertain whether the school was going to be ready in time for the upcoming 2020/21 academic year.
Throughout the project, Perfect Circle worked collaboratively with contractor Willmott Dixon, which was appointed via SCAPE's National Construction framework, to overcome the challenges presented by the pandemic.
Willmott Dixon and its supply chain adapted to the new site operating procedures under COVID-19 restrictions, and the council’s internal project management team ensured the scheme maintained momentum.
Due to the challenging circumstances, Perfect Circle spent more time than usual on the scheme, getting costs agreed between the client and contractor in order to keep things moving and get the project finished on time.
This effective collaboration across two of SCAPE's frameworks ensured that a spacious, light and innovative primary school was delivered in time for the start of the new academic year - despite the COVID-19 restrictions that were implemented.
This Perfect Circle project has generated social value in a number of ways:
- Through the creation of a new educational environment for young children in the local community, offering 420 primary school places
- Restrictions from the coronavirus pandemic was handled with care and resulted in the school finishing on time
- There was a strong collaboration between Perfect Circle, Willmott Dixon and North Somerset Council - resulting in a value for money project despite the circumstances