The redevelopment of Tring School is powering ahead and hitting a new milestone each month. Since work started, in March 2020, the entire operation has been executed with precision and dedication from the school and the construction firm, Bowmer + Kirkland. From the move into the temporary building, to the ground-breaking for the new structure, 2020 was a year for progress. As we move through 2021, there have already been vast changes, with so many more to come.
The interim school arrived in August 2020 and was an immediate hit with the students and staff. Despite being a temporary solution, the two-storey building containing 22 classrooms, laboratories, Learning Support department, plus offices and toilet facilities felt and feels like a permanent structure. The students and staff have been impressed with the quality of the building and can’t wait to see the new school grow throughout this year.
After we have relocated half of the school into the temporary accommodation, work began on demolishing some of the old buildings. Watching this happen has fascinated many of the students!
The first stage of the demolition was completed in August 2020, much to the delight and amazement of the students and staff. The entire process was done with little to no disruption to the school and adjoining sports centre. We said goodbye to the Neville block first, closely followed by the Hobson block and parts of Fells and Watkins. Not a thing goes to waste during the redevelopment. What was salvageable has been sent for recycling and the hardcore was ground up to lay under what will be the new school.
In December 2020 we saw the first foundations laid for the new structure. Since then, the building has been rapidly growing with each passing week and is now visible from the main road. The metal frame will form the now familiar zig-zag shape of the new three-storey building. As we move through 2021 we will see the new school completed before the final demolition and landscaping is completed in 2021.
As well as being resourceful with the old school structure, Bowmer + Kirkland will build and finish what will be one of the most sustainably designed schools in the country with additional facilities to support the pastoral care and emotional well-being of the students. Also, a local benefactor has committed to fund expanded sports facilities to encourage more participation in physical activity and exercise.
The new facilities will include state of the art science laboratories, design and technology facilities, art rooms, classrooms, new dining room, learning resources centre, sixth form centre, a four court sports hall and an activity studio. Every single teaching space will benefit from new and high quality ICT equipment. The front of the new building will be some 65 metres further back from the road and reducing the impact on the local community has been a key element in the exterior design and landscaping. Every single element of the new school has been carefully considered and meticulously planned.
The plans for the new school buildings (Presentation from Public Consultation September 2019) can be seen in the document folder at the bottom of this page.
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The aim of the redevelopment is to provide a state-of-the art, safe and energy efficient teaching and learning environment which meets the outstanding standards we have set ourselves as a school.
The redevelopment of Tring School will be the largest school rebuild of its kind taking place in the UK over the next three years. The majority of our school buildings were first constructed in 1956 when we moved to our current site at Mortimer Hill. Whilst these buildings have served us well over many years, they are no longer fit for purpose.
This project is a huge opportunity for all of our students and the wider Tring community. Our priorities are to ensure that our school remains fully operational with no impact upon the quality of our students’ learning, disruption to local people is kept to a minimum and the project is carried out in partnership with our students, parents, local residents and Department for Education.
The project will see a number of our old buildings taken down and being replaced with a new three storey block to house new teaching spaces. There will also be a brand new sports centre built adjacent to the existing sports hall. A £2m major refurbishment of the swimming pool has now been completed.
Work is now well underway in our programme of works for the new school building. A question has been asked about the capacity of the new school and whether we have or should have increased it. The short answer to this is no. The number of pupils we take is determined by the Local Authority (Herts County Council) and this is influenced by many factors including birth rates and housing developments. Our PAN (pupil admission number) is 240 and this is considered sufficient for the current and future needs of Tring and the catchment area of surrounding villages. Even as an academy we cannot simply increase our PAN without the approval of the Local Authority. Our new build is being paid for by the Department for Education and they will only fund according to the PAN so our capacity remains at 240 students per year group and 300 in the Sixth Form.
We look forward to updating you on our progress on this hugely exciting redevelopment project.