(L-R): Aidan Evans, senior quantity surveyor Tilbury Douglas, Abbie Nelson, design co-ordinator Tilbury Douglas, Paul Wilson, project manager Tilbury Douglas. Foreground: Keith Handy, director, Howarth.
Austen Shakespeare

Progress made on £7.7m Middlesbrough Special Academy project

A Durham-based architectural practice has announced progress is being made on the new £7.7m Discovery Special Academy project for the Department for Education (DfE) in Middlesbrough.

Following Tilbury Douglas’ appointment by the DfE Construction Framework as main contractor to design and build the new academy, Howarth Litchfield was appointed by Tilbury Douglas as part of its team, to act as lead designer with responsibility for providing a broad range of additional services.

The planning application for the new school building was approved in March 2021. Work started on site in August and completion is anticipated in March 2022, ready for the start of the academic year in September 2022/23.

TVEd manages five academies - four of which are mainstream primary academies, catering for 4-11-year-olds, including two with specialist learning units.

Discovery Special Academy offers specialised support for pupils with severe learning difficulties, including those with physical disabilities, multi-sensory impairments and complex medical problems.

Keith Handy, project architect and a director of Howarth Litchfield, said: “Specially designed interior spaces have been incorporated which allow for the integration of specialist therapeutic interventions such as rebound therapy, sensory stimulation, physiotherapy and soft play.

“The interrelationship between indoor and outdoor spaces and the variety of play and learning environments are essential design considerations to promote sound development.

The project is being delivered as part of the government’s free school capital programme.

Other members of the professional team include specialist contractors - Fairhurst Landscape Design; BGP - civil and structural engineering; Desco - mechanical and electrical engineering and Apex Acoustics.

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