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Construction begins on new Peterborough school

Construction of the new St John Henry Newman Catholic Primary School and Nursery in Peterborough is under way, with work benefitting the environment and nearby residents.

Work on the new school in Aqua Drive, Hampton Water, started recently with staff from Eco Modular Buildings (EMB) commencing ground works and preparing foundations. 

Peterborough City Council is keen to adopt modern and environmentally-friendly methods of construction. This unique project will see the school built off-site at EMB’s Lean Manufacturing Facility in Hull, with modules then transported to site in phases for installation and assembly, providing a watertight superstructure within a matter of weeks. 

Modular build schools are becoming more commonplace across the UK, with these methods driven by the Department for Education. A Modular delivery approach has many benefits including decreased waste, a reduced site period and reduced site traffic ensuring less disruption for local residents. 

St John Henry Newman Primary School and Nursery is due to open in September 2022, catering for 630 pupils and will be run by the Diocese of East Anglia.  

Simon Rawson, Eco Modular Buildings Ltd, Founder and CEO, said: “The whole team at Eco were delighted to be awarded St John Henry Newman Catholic Primary School on behalf of Peterborough City Council, which we understand is the Council’s first scheme commissioned using modern methods of construction. 

“This is an exciting project which we have been working collaboratively with Peterborough City Council, the Diocese of East Anglia and the Department for Education over the course of 2020/21, it’s exciting to be moving into the construction phase and we very much look forward to handing over a  beautiful school ready for the first intake in September 2022, we’re certain the school will be enjoyed by young learners for many years to come.” 

Helen Bates from the Diocese of East Anglia Schools’ Team, said: “As the first brand new Catholic school to be built in the country for more than 10 years, this is an important and exciting project for Catholic education nationally. St John Henry Newman will be a Catholic school serving its local community and we very much look forward to welcoming all children to our new school in September 2022.”

Councillor Lynne Ayres, Peterborough City Council’s cabinet member for children’s services, education, skills and the university, said: “Peterborough is one of the fastest growing cities in the UK and we expect this trend to continue, so finding new school places is an urgent and ongoing challenge.    

“This is a unique project and it’s fantastic to see construction underway. We’re all looking forward to the school opening its doors to pupils next year. It is going to be a huge asset not just for Hampton, but for Peterborough as a whole, for years to come.”