Interserve begins work on new special needs school in Bristol

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Interserve was awarded the £9.3m contract by the Department for Education to design and build the new Soundwell Academy for Learn@ MAT, which delivers specialist education for children across the South West

The academy will be constructed on the Soundwell Centre site which was formerly part of the City of Bristol College.

Interserve will create a facility for pupils with a range of needs, with the design team paying particular attention to creating a variety of bespoke learning spaces as well as a residential unit for short midweek stays.

The Learn@ group of academies serve the West of England with specialist education facilities for children aged five through to 19 who have a variety of needs.

Interserve’s successful bid for the Learn@ contract aligns with the Interserve Construction’s strategy of delivering first-class facilities in the education sector, where it has a strong track record as partner with the Department for Education.

In the past six months, Interserve has been awarded six new school build projects including a £27m contract to build the new Saddleworth School in Oldham.

Also working on the Learn@ MAT project at Soundwell are DKA Architects, structural engineers Clarke Bond, and Silcock Dawson, which will provide maintenance and engineering support.

Modern new facilities and resources

Paul Gale, divisional director at Interserve Construction, said: “We are pleased to have been selected to deliver a specialist education academy for Learn@ which adds to our portfolio of work on schools in the South West.

“This contract award further strengthens our position as one of the leading construction companies serving the UK’s education sector.”

Learn@ MAT spokesperson, said: “When it eventually reaches full capacity on the main site at Soundwell the school will cater for 136 young people aged between five-to-18-years, with Social and Emotional Mental Health needs or Speech, Language and Communication Needs.

“The new provision will have modern new facilities and resources to meet the range of needs of young people. It will also offer them the opportunity to study a wide range of both academic and vocational subjects.

“The vocational learning bases will offer, motor-vehicle studies, construction studies, hospitality and catering and hair and beauty.”

Construction is expected to be complete by July 2021.

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