Press release

Major £3.9 million school rebuild gets underway in the North West

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Mesne Lea Primary School in Salford hosted an official turf cutting ceremony on 12 February to mark the start of construction work.

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The school is 1 of 39 in the North West to be rebuilt under the first phase of the government’s priority school building programme (PSBP), worth £2.4 billion, which will address the needs of 260 of the schools in England in the worst condition.

Thanks to the PSBP, pupils and teachers attending the school are set to benefit from a £3.9 million, fit-for-purpose rebuild that will improve the existing outdated facilities.

The new 2-storey primary school will include a large multi-purpose hall, and a shared teaching space between reception and nursery for combined groups.

Schools Minister David Laws said:

The start of construction work at Mesne Lea Primary School marks a key milestone for the priority school building programme in the North West and an exciting phase in the development of the school.

Delivering great new schools will help to build a stronger economy and a fairer society, so that every young person across the region can get on in life.

Vital building work is taking place at schools in the worst state across the country. We are making good progress with 16 school buildings now open - 55 are under construction and the remaining projects are well into the development or planning stages.

Excited students and staff from the school were joined council dignitaries, representatives from the Education Funding Agency (EFA) and the contractor, Interserve Construction, for a turf cutting ceremony to celebrate the start of work.

Julie Finlay, headteacher, Mesne Lea Primary School said:

The children, staff and governors are working hard to becoming an outstanding school. This new school building will help us to achieve this. The children are excited to see the start of the works and are looking forward to watching the building take shape.

Sid Wallace, Contract Manager, Interserve said:

Interserve are very pleased to be back in Salford, delivering the new school. It’s the second school in the programme of 7, with the first project due to complete in 2 weeks.

The work at Mesne Lea Primary School is due for completion by September 2015.

Improving the standard of school buildings so that pupils learn in high quality classrooms and teachers have access to the best facilities is a vital part of the government’s plan for education.

Thanks to the PSBP, school buildings are being rebuilt faster and cheaper than those built under the previous school building initiative - building schools for the future (BSF). Under the BSF it took 3 years for construction work to begin. This was slashed to 1 year for the PSBP, with projects costing around a third less.

On Monday 9 February the government announced details of the second phase of the PSBP, worth around £2 billion, which will see a further 277 school buildings rebuilt or refurbished bringing the total to 537 schools to benefit over the life of the programme.

Notes to editors

  1. The priority school building programme was established in 2011 to address the needs of those schools in the worst condition across the country.
  2. The list of 261 successful schools under the first phase of the programme was announced in May 2012. This has since been revised to 260 school projects, after St Philip Howard Catholic Primary School in Kent was closed due to insufficient pupil demand in the local area.
  3. Thanks to decisions which have been taken to improve efficiency and reduce waste in central school building programmes, significant work on those projects is already underway - as of 28 January 2015, 16 school buildings are already open, 55 are under construction and the remaining projects are well into the development or planning stages.
  4. In May 2014 the government announced a further £2 billion for the second phase of the programme.
  5. A list of the 277 schools to benefit from the second phase of the PSBP was published on 9 February 2015.

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Published 16 February 2015