Topping out milestone celebrated at Bowburn Primary School

Key representatives attended a ceremony to mark the topping out of Bowburn Primary School.

The project delivery team for Bowburn Primary School have made excellent progress on the development by working in collaboration to overcome the difficulties faced as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak. Now we have achieved this key topping out milestone, the next phase will see the internal fit out commence which will include the construction of partitions and services.”

Grant Whyte, Project Manager at Esh Construction

Esh’s commercial build division has marked a key milestone in the construction of Bowburn Primary School with a topping out ceremony as the new school building reaches its peak. Key representatives from Esh Construction, Durham County Council, Faithful+Gould and the school’s Headteacher visited site to celebrate the official topping out with the roof installation now complete.

Located in the County Durham village of Bowburn, the development got underway in March 2020. The inverted roof uses an ‘upside down approach’ with the waterproofing being installed below the insulation. The roof is topped out with 100 tonne of pebbles which act as a filter for the rainwater into a symphonic drainage system.

Designed by Ryder Architecture in partnership with council and school staff, the new building will provide a state-of-the-art learning environment for 21st century teaching and learning. The modern, two-storey building is designed to maximise light and volume within its classroom facilities and will include external learning spaces, outdoor play equipment, car parking and drop off/pick up zones.

Grant Whyte, Project Manager at Esh Construction, said: “The project delivery team for Bowburn Primary School have made excellent progress on the development by working in collaboration to overcome the difficulties faced as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak. Now we have achieved this key topping out milestone, the next phase will see the internal fit out commence which will include the construction of partitions and services.”

The new primary school is required to address a shortfall of pupil spaces in the area and will have capacity for 570 pupils and a 70-place nursery unit.

Jackie Glass, Headteacher of Bowburn Primary School, commented: “We are all pleased that the new Bowburn Primary School building has reached this milestone. It’s been wonderful seeing the building take shape since the start of construction in February, and as its being built on the school field this has obviously been very exciting for the children! We’ve also been pleased that the Esh Site Team have allowed staff to take photos of the construction at various stages to share with pupils and parents. The feedback from this has been very positive and we all can’t wait to finally be inside our wonderful new school.”

The school is being developed on the site of the former Bowburn Junior School which remains fully operational whilst construction work is ongoing, with demolition taking place once it is fully vacated. The new building is due to be open for teaching after the Easter holiday in 2021.

Graeme Plews, School Places and Admissions Manager at Durham County Council, said: “We are very pleased with the progress to date on the new build primary school for Bowburn, particularly in the face of the difficulties presented with by Covid-19. The installation of the roof is a key milestone in the build programme and will also enable other work to the new build to continue throughout the autumn and winter so that the school can open as planned next year.” 

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