“Awesome” Luton school opens in time for new term

28 November 2017

Pupils as young as four have described their new school, The Linden Academy in Luton, as ‘awesome’ following completion in time for their 2016-17 academic year.

In an exclusive video interview with ISG, principal Carrie Matthews said the children were thrilled with their new school.

“They cite the hall as being ‘awesome’,” Carrie said. “It’s very much a testament to the hard work of the design team and the construction team.”

Carrie said ISG were unflappable in the face of a strict deadline.

“We had 390 children that needed to start school on 5 September [and] we needed a building,” she said.

“We had to move out of our old building. We had nowhere to go. So the pressure was on from day one. At no point did ISG waver in terms of their commitment.

“I will always be indebted to the ISG team that worked on this project for that reason. How they did it I do not know.”

The 26,000 sq ft steel frame building includes 21 classrooms with super-sized smart board TV screens, commercial kitchen and support facilities.

ISG also provided landscaping across the site including a soft-play zone, grassed play area, hard-surfaced games area, car parking and pathways.

The Linden Academy, formerly known as the Moorlands Free School, is a mixed school catering for children aged between four and 11.

It is the second project ISG has completed on the Education Funding Agency (EFA) regional framework.

Neil Winstanley, ISG’s Engineering Services UK divisional operations manager, said: “We worked closely with the Shared Learning Trust and the EFA to develop a high-quality and inspirational learning environment.

“In order to achieve the shared goals and deliver the scheme in such an accelerated timeframe, we developed a smart construction and fit out programme, which gave us early access to completed spaces in a carefully phased process.

“This approach demanded close collaboration with the school and robust programming, with the buy in from all project stakeholders. Everyone on the scheme had a clear focus from day one and this clarity of purpose proved essential in delivering such a fast-track project.”

Click below to watch the video.