building transformation blog
Welcome to Leasowes' Building Transformation Blog
This year between June and (hopefully!) November time, the Leasowes site will undergo some fantastic changes, including new classrooms and sites for our Nursery and Key Stage One children. Most excitingly, however, will be the makeover of the central area between the current Key Stage 1 and 2 sites... yes, that's right! Our walkway will be transformed into a true hub of the school complete with a new library to continue our work on engaging our young people in the magic of reading, amongst other impressive developments.
All developments as the project continues will be posted here, organised in reverse chronologically for your convenience. Alternatively, use the links below to jump to a date of your choice.
Welcome back to the building transformation blog. The Leasowes staff have returned to work this week relaxed, refreshed and ready for a new year. Luckily for us, however, the building team haven't quite had the same summer holiday as many of us!
At the last instalment, the nursery had been torn down and concrete had arrived. The changes in just 8 weeks - I'm sure we will all agree - are utterly staggering. From the road, we can see that lots of work has been done, but nothing compares to walking the site. Before we know it, our new Y2 classrooms, EYFS entrance and 'hub of the school' will be open, furnished and ready for business. I'll dive right into the pictures now so you can see the magic for yourselves...
First up - the new Leasowes Extra updates. Inside what is currently the Reception classrooms, two interior doors now lead into a small office space (left door) and through to the new entrance (right door). The second photograph shows the entrance from the outside, which is to the left of the main school entrance. Soon, this will be rendered and practically complete. Our final picture here showcases the new cladding to the outside of this building. The new wood is striking and gives the building a new lease of life.
Now for the fun bit...
Around the corner from the site office, we are greeted with the new 'hub' area from the outside. Nearly at roof height, the walls have been going in and soon there will be a roof and windows. Photograph one looks towards the area where we will soon have a new Y2 space, while picture two looks towards how the new building connects to the Key Stage One hall. Already, it is a huge improvement from the walkway that it has replaced.
Next, we headed up, up, up and saw what the new building looks like as a bird's eye view.
This area - that will house moveable seating - will serve as additional learning space and our new library. The grey concrete you can see in photograph two is an addition to the existing space left by the walkway and even the photos don't really do justice to how large this room will be - nearly the size of two big classrooms. The area to the right - the ICT suite - will be repurposed into one of two new Year 2 classrooms.
... but two classrooms are required! Located to the right of the existing suite is the new-build room. Between the two rooms will be the Y2 toilets and a disabled toilet, together with the new entrance that leads from the other side of the site. Once the scaffolding comes down, these rooms will look extra roomy and ready for our fabulous Y2s.
We hope you are as thrilled as we are at the progress the builders are making. Soon, roofs, windows, open spaces and... one day... finishing touches. Check back for more updates soon.
Over the last week or so, major changes have been happening! The site between KS1 and the ICT Suite was cleared (taken away in the giant skip that has had the children fascinated!)... and now, work can really begin. This week, children were thrilled to be able to see right through to Porlock Avenue from the KS2 playground, and some of them continue to spend the majority of their break times watching the progress. I'm sure we will have some aspirational builders and architects as a result of this work.
Also this week, the trenches were dug for the new building's foundations. Mrs Bettany and Mr Coombs were on site to inspect one evening after school, together with Site Manager Tony...
It was staggering to see the size that the completed area will be, and staff are buzzing about all the extra space they can utilise. If you look really carefully at this photograph, you might even be able to spot Mrs Wood in her hockey kit having a look from the Y6 classrooms! Isn't she nosy?!
After the excitement of the digging, things started moving quickly! Excitingly, a massive concrete mixer arrived on site to produce the materials needed. Y5 and 6 had a front-row seat, and Miss Reeves managed to escape the classroom for a few minutes to take some snaps!
By Friday, builders were seen dismantling parts of the KS1 building and laying initial bricks in readiness for the next stage of the project. Keep your eyes peeled for our next instalment!
Today's instalment on the building transformation blog will include the all-important 'before' photos! In a few short months, we will look back on these and find the school utterly unrecognisable! In an assembly some weeks ago, Mrs Bettany outlined the plans to the very excited children. Our Year 6s are only a little bit put out they won't attend Leasowes, but I'm sure they'll be back eventually to see the improvements.
Having photographed the 'before', it was now time to get cracking on the transformation. The proposed changes have been presented to the community, staff and children in different ways, and below we will share one or two of the graphics created.
While the building staff have been on site preparing for the last few days - your children may have reported all of the weird and wonderful ways they are getting from KS1 to KS2 and back again for lunches - it was today that things really started happening! As the diggers moved in and demolition started, the children (and staff!) got really excited: staff were seen during lunchtime snapping their own pictures, children congregated behind the protective fencing to get a closer look, and Y1 had an impromptu trip out of the classroom to take a closer peek, as there was no way quality learning could take place until they'd observed the demolition of the Nursery!
Across just one day, the site has turned from a neat, orderly area to... well... take a look...
Clockwise from top: 1) The Nursery's demolition has begun! Miss Leonard caught this pivotal moment as the front of the building is torn away. 2) The walkway at the top of the school is pulled out - the panels are gone, and the view from the staffroom is quite the sight! 3) The view from the KS1 site towards the walkway - you can now see right through, and there is more demolition coming! 4) The giant skip which currently holds what used to be our Nursery building.
So, as you can see, things are really underway here! Check back soon for more updates, more demolition and transformation pictures.
Today, a small yet significant event took place... the site containers have arrived at Leasowes Primary School! Staff cleared the car park, with teachers sharing lifts to school, walking or even - if you're Mr Coombs - tackling the journey by bike! Whilst seemingly insignificant, the arrival of these appropriately Leasowes-blue containers herald the beginning of our building project. Soon, the site will be full of the chatter of builders and project managers... Mrs Bettany is already itching to get her hard hat on and get to work!
Check back soon for updates including the all-important 'before' photographs and more detail of the plans to transform our school.