Case study

Campus Whitehaven

A brand new state-of-the-art education and activity hub which brings together St Benedict’s Catholic High School and Mayfield School for children with special educational needs.

Children at Mayfield school in a classroom and quote from Gillian Temple, headteacher.

Children at Mayfield school

Nearest NDA site Duration Total investment Sellafield contribution Partners Delivered by
Sellafield Three years £30 million £10.6 million NDA, Cumbria County Council, Wates Construction, Copeland Community Fund, St Benedict’s School, Mayfield School Cumbria County Council
Infographic summary of the project

Sustainable Incomes Social Impact Objective:

To improve access to sustainable incomes, beyond Sellafield Ltd, by increasing skills, knowledge, aspirations and access to opportunities.

Outcomes:

We know that in the future we’re going to need higher-level skills to progress our clean-up mission. High quality local education provision is essential to deliver that. It will be years before we can record and measure this benefit – but we are confident that it will be attained.

And it will ensure more of our young people benefit from the opportunities created in the local economy in years to come.

In terms of the construction itself, contractor Wates made a commitment to use local suppliers and sub-contractors, spending over £7m with them

County councillor David Southward said:

This is a wonderful moment to celebrate and I’m delighted that we can finally see the realisation of what was once just an idea. There’s been a huge amount of work by all the partners to get to this end point and it’s genuinely exciting to think about what this campus will do for local young people and the area as a whole.

Gillian Temple, headteacher from Mayfield School added:

We’re absolutely thrilled, it is an amazing learning space, better than we ever hoped. Plans started in 2014 and it’s a dream to reality for me. It’s totally accessible and the potential for two schools working together is wonderful.

Paul Vallance, from the NDA, added:

Campus Whitehaven will provide an inspirational learning environment for young people and help them access the employment opportunities of the future.

Sustainable Incomes Social Impact Objective:

To improve access to sustainable incomes, beyond Sellafield Ltd, by increasing skills, knowledge, aspirations and access to opportunities.

Why was this project important to the community?

  • Schools in north Copeland in a state of disrepair and in need of investment for new facilities
  • Educational attainment levels inconsistent in the local area, very poor in some areas
  • Forecasted skills shortage in the future across all levels and industries

What was involved?

Sellafield Ltd partnered with other organisations, including the NDA, to drive the project forward. Funding provided enabled the County Council to deliver the project, which simply would not have happened without Sellafield Ltd funding.

What worked well?

  • Leveraged Sellafield Ltd Social Impact funding to generate investment from elsewhere.
  • Brought together partners from other organisations around a common goal.
  • School has been built and pupils are now using it.

What could be improved and feedback?

This was a difficult project to deliver with so many different stakeholders involved.

Regretfully the trust which was, at the time, running Whitehaven Academy, chose not to get involved. They had been part of the design of the original concept in 2014.

Partners who were involved worked well together.

Next steps

The school campus has been completed. We’re continuing to work with them on helping them sell the community facilities (publicising them to our workforce and the wider community).

Published 14 January 2020