hub South West Scotland

New £44m Largs Campus handed over by Morrison Construction

Infrastructure partnership hub South West has successfully delivered one of the biggest projects it has ever undertaken, the new £44 million Largs Campus.

Heralding a new era in education in the Ayrshire coastal town, the ambitious project was handed over on time and on budget to community partner North Ayrshire Council. The new facility was built by Morrison Construction.

The primary schools incorporated into the new Campus, Largs Primary and St Mary’s, moved in yesterday along with Early Years nurseries. The relocated Largs Academy will join them on April 18.

The Campus, which will accommodate more than 2000 pupils, is part of North Ayrshire Council’s biggest ever investment. It includes two theatres, a gym hall believed to be the biggest in the UK and art classrooms with balconies that enable outdoor working with views of the stunning Largs Coastline.

Councillor John Bell, cabinet member for education and youth employment, said: “The facilities at Largs Campus are going to be the best in Scotland. We will have the best sport facilities in Scotland, if not the UK.

“We have invested heavily in the nursery and have state-of-the-art facilities that incorporate parent rooms, family rooms and imaginative play and learning areas for our young people.

“I am so proud of this facility and know that the young people have a fantastic environment to attain and achieve.”

Michael McBrearty, chief executive of hub South West, said: “hub South West is delighted to handover this wonderful new learning environment to North Ayrshire Council.

“Largs Campus is an impressive and contemporary educational facility set in a fantastic location. It will provide an inspirational environment in which pupils can learn and thrive. It will be a real asset to the local community.”

Allan Cunningham, operations director of Morrison Construction, said: “Not only does this project provide a permanent benefit to the town of Largs but it has supported 25 work placements, 13 apprenticeships and created 73 new jobs.

“Students have been given exposure to the construction industry, small businesses have expanded and there has been a positive impact on the local economy.”

hub South West was established in 2012 to deliver value-for-money on public sector community-based infrastructure across Ayrshire, Lanarkshire and Dumfries and Galloway.

Work starts on Ayr’s new Queen Margaret Academy

Young people across South Ayrshire are set to benefit as work starts on the new Queen Margaret Academy in Ayr.

The new state-of-the-art school which will be completed in October 2019 will not only help transform learning but is set to become a hub for the local community.

John Swinney, Deputy First Minister and cabinet secretary for education and skills, joined with young people, staff and South Ayrshire councillors to mark the start of the work.

The £25 million project has been made possible thanks to £8.5m from South Ayrshire Council and £16.5m from the Scottish Government through their ‘Schools for the Future’ programme.

The new school which is currently being built in the grounds of the existing school will have places for up to 800 young people.

Featuring modern classrooms and interactive learning environments, large games hall, a gym, a fitness and movement room, two all-weather pitches, and hard games courts, the school is sure to impress.

Pupils Niamh Scullion (left) and Alex Hull join council leader Douglas Campbell and Deputy First Minister John Swinney

The new Queen Margaret Academy will also be home to Psychological Services and a Supported Learning Centre, which are already at the existing school and will have accommodation for teaching Gaelic.

When the school opens in 2019, the old building will then be demolished and the site fully landscaped.

The school is being built by Kier Construction and is being delivered by South Ayrshire Council in partnership with hub South West. The £25m project is part of a £94m programme of works delivered across South Ayrshire with the aim of enhancing standards through targeted investment.

John Swinney, Deputy First Minister, said: “We know state-of-the-art accommodation can inspire students, staff and parents, and so I am very happy to help get work started on the new academy which will be the 104th school to start construction of a total 117 to be built under the Schools for the Future programme by March 2020.

“I am looking forward to seeing the difference this building will make for pupils in years to come, and pleased the Scottish Government was able to provide almost £17m from our Schools for the Future programme to help make this happen.”

Councillor Peter Henderson, resources and performance portfolio holder at South Ayrshire Council, said: “The start of work at the new Queen Margaret Academy is another example of our commitment to transform learning environments across South Ayrshire.

“One of our priorities is to ensure young people leave school with the skills they need for learning, life and work and delivering a first-class education is a significant step towards achieving this.

“Schools always play a central role in our communities. We have just introduced an initiative in some of our schools called Our People, Our Place. Through these schools we work with partners to deliver local services in the heart of communities.

“I have no doubt that when complete the new Queen Margaret Academy will also be a focal point and a hub for the community.”

Michael McBrearty, chief executive of delivery partner, hub South West, said: “We are delighted to see construction works now commencing on the new Queen Margaret Academy site. Having worked with South Ayrshire Council previously on a number of successful projects including Dailly Primary School, Tarbolton Community Campus and the fantastic new Ayr Academy, we are looking forward to building on our portfolio and our relationship with the council.

“The new Queen Margaret Academy will be a real asset to the local community and a wonderfully modern and innovative environment in which young people can learn and thrive.”

Brian McQuade, managing director of Kier Construction Scotland, said: “We are pleased to start work on delivering this leading, modern academy for South Ayrshire Council which will provide fantastic new teaching and sports facilities for students and the wider community to enjoy.

“Through hub South West, we are working with local suppliers and SMEs to ensure that the project provides important training and employment opportunities and boosts the local economy. During construction, up to 100 workers will be on site during peak periods and we will create 20 work placements, 10 apprenticeships and a graduate traineeship, giving local young people valuable experience of working in this diverse and rewarding industry.”

Tony Flynn, Head Teacher at Queen Margaret Academy, said: “This is an exciting time for young people, parents and staff. The plans look amazing and extensive consultation took place to ensure the new school reflects the needs of everyone including the local community.

“The new school building will be a great benefit to our young people, given its state-of-the-art teaching facilities and extensive new sports facilities, which include two all-weather floodlit synthetic pitches and a fitness suite”.

The Bishop of Galloway, Right Reverend William Nolan blessed the site of the new school and said: “The Diocese of Galloway welcomes the investment by South Ayrshire Council and the Scottish Government in building a new Queen Margaret Academy.

“This investment in a new building is an investment in our teachers and staff, supporting them in their enthusiasm to educate, teach and inspire our young people.

“It’s an investment in our children and in their future. The provision of a modern purpose built facility will inspire our children to seize the opportunity to grow in knowledge, wisdom and virtue.

“It’s an investment in Catholic education, ensuring a new home of learning that will serve the young people of today and of future generations. As we cut the first turf today, we look forward to when this building is complete.”

hub South West plans hub club networking event and Supplier Showcase

Michael McBrearty, hub South West CEO

Construction and infrastructure-focused partnership hub South West is supporting Lanarkshire Business Week with two key events.

Firstly, over 50 construction sector members of the highly-successful hub Club will be meeting at South Lanarkshire Council’s offices in Hamilton for a networking session from 11.45 until 2.00 on February 27.

Following that, potential suppliers to the construction industry in Lanarkshire will attend a forum to have the opportunity to show off their attributes to major construction companies.

Hosted by hub South West in partnership with Clyde Gateway Lanarkshire, a Supplier Showcase will be held on March 2, from 9.00am to 1.00pm at Rutherglen Town Hall, Main Street, Rutherglen G73 2JJ.

A public-private partnership of local authorities, NHS, blue light services and a clutch of Tier One contractors including Morrison, Graham, Morgan Sindall and Kier, hub South West’s development programme is aimed at ambitious companies in construction and related sectors based in south west Scotland.

It aims to secure at least 65% of major infrastructure contracts for local businesses; recycling the local pound, and creating opportunities for local businesses to thrive and expand.

hub South West CEO, Michael McBrearty, said: “hub South West is committed to engaging positively with the locally based supply chain with a view to helping them improve their chances of gaining hub contracts.

“By doing this, around £500m of the anticipated construction spend over the next five years will result in contracts for local companies and jobs for local people.”

The supplier showcase will accommodate 35 stands, 15 of which are reserved for Lanarkshire based businesses. Such has been demand that they are all sold. There will also be learning and information sessions running alongside the event as well as opportunities to ‘meet the buyer’. There will be free tea and coffee and a buffet lunch around 12 noon.

Anyone interested in attending should visit the hub South West website or contact Margaret Milton on 01698 464 556. Those who have missed out on a stand can still attend the event for free as a delegate.

hub South West launches network to help companies win business from Tier 1 contractors

The hub Club meeting in Dumfires and Galloway earlier this month

The hub Club meeting in Dumfires and Galloway earlier this month

Construction and infrastructure-focused partnership hub South West has launched a networking arm which aims to better connect businesses throughout Lanarkshire, Ayrshire and Dumfries and Galloway.

The hub Club, which has already held three highly successful  inaugural events this month in Ayr, Cumbernauld and Dumfries, is aimed not only at bringing SMEs closer to Tier 1 contractors such as Morrison, Graham, Ashleigh, Morgan Sindall and Kier, but also at enabling companies engaged across a range of activities to meet each other and do business together.

Gordon Hunter

Gordon Hunter

Gordon Hunter, supply chain development manager at hub South West, who together with his team, has overseen the hub club launch events said: “We have been running a ‘Building for Growth’ programme for companies throughout the South West of Scotland for a few years now and the hub club idea evolved as a natural extension from our basic aim of getting people to meet, talk and learn from each other.

“We all know that people prefer to do business with people they know and The hub Club provides a regular forum for up to forty companies at a time, to sit down in a room together and talk about their businesses, share their experiences and potentially collaborate on projects together.

“We welcome all companies in the South West region to join The hub Club and to participate in our series of monthly events into 2018. Anyone interested can find out more from our website.”

Michael McBrearty, chief executive of hub South West, said: “Our mission is to enable cost-efficient design and construction of community facilities within South West Scotland and to provide value for money and generate growth in the local economy through a new method of partnership working and procurement.

“A fundamental part of that approach is to ensure that as many local businesses as possible are hired to contribute their skills and expertise to these projects. The hub Club helps us to achieve that objective by harnessing the vast range of expertise that already exists amongst SMEs throughout the region and putting it to work.”

Green light given as new Queen Margaret Academy reaches financial close

Work is now about to get underway to start building the new Queen Margaret Academy

Work is now about to get underway to start building the new Queen Margaret Academy

Plans to build a new Queen Margaret Academy in Ayr are a step closer with the official contracts now signed after reaching financial close.

South Ayrshire Council is now preparing to move on site to get work underway to deliver the new facility.

The £25 million project will provide places for 800 young people, with modern classrooms, interactive ICT, a large games hall, two gyms, two all-weather pitches, and hard games courts. The building will also house Psychological Services and a Supported Learning Centre, which are already based at QMA.

The new Queen Margaret Academy will be built in the grounds of the existing school and is expected to open in October 2019. The current building will be demolished after the new school opens with the site to be fully landscaped.

The main contractor for the project will be Kier Construction.

Councillor Peter Henderson, portfolio holder for resources and performance, at South Ayrshire Council, said the latest announcement was an important milestone: “We’re committed to providing young people with the best possible start in life, and delivering a first-class education goes a long way to helping achieve that.

“By investing in this significant new building we’re creating a base to transform the way young people are taught, with the replacement school a more flexible space in which to deliver lessons.

“The building and facilities will also be available for community use, which will help make the project an important local hub. With initial work due to start in the next few weeks I look forward to seeing this ambitious new project take shape in the months ahead.”

Michael McBrearty, chief executive of delivery partner, hub South West, said: “The new Queen Margaret Academy is hub South West’s fifth educational collaboration with South Ayrshire Council, having recently completed the new Ayr Academy, innovative modernisation at Marr College in Troon, and new primary schools for Dailly and Tarbolton.

“The new academy will provide a wonderfully modern and inclusive community facility that will provide excellent resources and opportunities for the area.

“We look forward to proceeding to site with contractor Kier Construction in the coming weeks.”

Managing director of Kier Construction’s Scotland & north-east England business, Brian McQuade, said: “We’re proud to continue our relationship with South Ayrshire Council and looking forward to delivering an exciting new project which reinforces our position as a UK leader across education.

“We’ll be on site soon to start to deliver this state-of-the-art teaching, sporting and community facility at Queen Margaret Academy, which will help to support future generations.

“As with all of our activity across Scotland, we will encourage the use of locally based suppliers and subcontractors, bringing economic growth in the area and providing employment and training opportunities for the people of Ayrshire.”

Godfrey Syrett’s education division is top of the class

A recent high school fit-out by Godfrey Syrett

A recent high school fit-out by Godfrey Syrett

Furniture manufacturer Godfrey Syrett is just weeks away from concluding its fourth Scottish school contract of 2017, after fitting out the new Kelso High School.

The £22 million state of the art facility in the Scottish Borders has been built by Morrison Construction and will accommodate 780 pupils.

After winning the contract following a competitive tender process, Godfrey Syrett took the architects original designs and converted them into a bespoke buildable solution whilst remaining within budget and programme.

Earlier in the year, the firm completed the installation of fitted and loose furniture at two brand new schools in South Ayrshire as part of a contract worth £328,000.

The state-of-the-art Tarbolton Community Campus caters for over 300 children and at Dailly Primary School a new two-storey building has replaced three previously separate buildings, with space for 100 pupils.

The schools form part of a wider investment by hub South West Scotland, which has a large pipeline of investment for schools in South Ayrshire.

The firm also completed a fit-out at the new £8.6m Duns Primary school in Berwickshire.

Godfrey Syrett’s education division accounts for almost 30% of the company’s turnover, with a dedicated team which delivers contracts directly with schools and main contractors.

Divisional director at Godfrey Syrett, Derek Mitchell, said: “2017 is proving to be a tremendous year for our education division, in terms of direct sales to schools as well as supporting main contractors such as Morrison Construction with new projects. We are building a strong reputation in Scotland and look forward to working on further projects in the future.”

The firm is also delivering a further three contracts amounting to £2m in South West Scotland on behalf of Graham Construction. The three secondary schools include a new £26.5m learning campus in Dalbeattie, as well as St Joseph’s College and North West Campus in Dumfries, all of which are being rebuilt under the Scottish Futures Trust.

Kilmarnock’s £45m campus project tops out

Michael McBrearty, chief executive of hub South West, delivers a speech during the ceremony

Michael McBrearty, chief executive of hub South West, delivers a speech during the ceremony

The £45 million William McIlvanney Campus in Kilmarnock has passed another important milestone with its topping out ceremony last week.

The event marked a crucial stage in the construction of the leading education facility, which is on target for completion next year.

The new Campus, which will create new opportunities and benefits for the entire community, will bring together Kilmarnock Academy and James Hamilton Academy, along with the merger of Silverwood Primary and New Farm Primary and Early Childhood Centre.

It is the latest initiative to be facilitated by hub South West, the construction and infrastructure-focused partnership which works with forward-looking companies and authorities in Lanarkshire, Ayrshire and Dumfries and Galloway.

william-mcilvanney-campus-topping-out-ceremony-131017_37623093226_oBeing delivered by Kier Construction for East Ayrshire Council, the campus will also promote the Gaelic language with a centre of excellence. It will accommodate 1,465 secondary, 383 primary and 80 morning and 80 afternoon early years pupils.

The new Campus honours the memory of the legendary author – known locally as Willie – who was not only a pupil at Kilmarnock Academy but later worked as a teacher. Its name will be a reminder for people who not only admired McIlvanney’s work but knew him personally.

Michael McBrearty, chief executive of hub South West, said:  “The William McIlvanney Campus is an ongoing success on so many levels. The enthusiasm of all participating partners working on this project is reflected in the excellent progress being made.

“This development has provided many educational activities for students from schools and colleges across the region who have participated in project related events. It has also created a number of opportunities for local apprentices and graduates.”

william-mcilvanney-campus-topping-out-ceremony-131017_36961810334_oCouncillor Douglas Reid, leader of East Ayrshire Council, said: “William McIlvanney was one of Scotland’s most important writers. He started his professional life as a teacher and remained a dedicated supporter of high quality education throughout his life.

“It is entirely fitting that his name will be associated with this exceptional development for generations to come.”

Brian McQuade, managing director of Kier Construction Scotland and north-east England, said: “Throughout the build, we have worked with local suppliers and SMEs to ensure that the project boosts the local Ayrshire economy. We have created 19 apprenticeships, 16 work placements and two graduate traineeships.”

Families cement ties with new Largs Campus during top out ceremony

3The development of the new Largs Campus being built by Morrison Construction reached a major milestone last week.

The ‘topping out’ ceremony was a very special occasion for two local families, the Trotters and Wilsons, who won a competition to have their names engraved on bricks of the new facility.

Two bricks were laid in a wall on-site by North Ayrshire Provost Ian Clarkson during the ceremony.

The ‘topping out’ milestone celebrates the building being wind and water tight and is another exciting step toward the officially opening next year.

The £44 million project will create a modern, fit-for-purpose facility for a relocated Largs Academy, along with a relocated St Mary’s RC school, an amalgamated Brisbane and Kelburn Primary school, and new Early Learning Centre.

Work started last October and construction is on schedule and due to be completed by March 2018.

The Largs Campus project has been developed and delivered in partnership with hub South West Scotland.

Morrison Construction operations director, Allan Cunningham, said: “We are delighted to welcome members of the council and the local community to the campus to see how much progress we have made so far on this fantastic new school. We will be working hard with all stakeholders involved to make sure we continue our excellent progress and deliver a first-class facility for the children of the local area.”

Michael McBrearty, chief executive of hub South West Scotland, added: “It’s fantastic to be able to invite the local community and pupils from the schools involved in this project onto the Largs Campus site, and give people the opportunity to see this innovative facility come together.

“This special event further reiterates this new development as a true community campus which will have a positive effect in the area for generations to come.”

hub South West delivers £25m Ayr Academy building

Ayr AcademyA new Ayr Academy secondary school is set to open later this month after being delivered by Kier Construction and hub South West Scotland on behalf of South Ayrshire Council.

Ayr Academy, whose origins can be traced back to 1233 but did not come to be known by its present name until 1796, has moved to the Craigie Estate from its former location in the town’s Fort Street.

The new Ayr Campus will cater for 1,000 school students, with the capacity for a further 300, and will create a modern and inclusive facility where students can learn in a sustainable and well-designed environment.

The £25 million project is a part of a £94m pipeline being delivered by the authority across South Ayrshire in the next 18 months with the aim of enhancing standards through targeted investment.

Ayr AcademyDuring its construction the new Ayr Academy was used as a part of hub South West’s bespoke programme, ‘Your Future starts in Construction’, during which it collaborated with the Prince’s Trust and Ayrshire College to enable local youngsters to gain work experience on a live site and achieve a unique accreditation.

Ayr Academy was the first project in Scotland to reach financial close post European System of Accounts (ESA 10) resolution in January 2016.

Michael McBrearty, chief executive of hub South West, said: “Ayr Academy Campus is a wonderful state-of-the-art facility that I’m sure all students and teachers will enjoy.

“It is the latest project we have delivered on behalf of South Ayrshire Council over the past twelve months and is great tribute to partnership working that we can now celebrate the finished result. The new campus will be a great asset.”

Ayr AcademyBrian McQuade, managing director of Kier Construction’s Scotland and North-East England business, said: “We are pleased to have delivered this leading, modern Academy with fantastic new sports facilities for students and the wider community to enjoy, building on our track record of delivering quality schools throughout Scotland.

“Through hub South West, we have worked with local suppliers and SME’s to ensure that the project boosts the local economy of Ayr and the surrounding area, including training and employment opportunities. During the construction of Ayr Academy we have created 17 work placements, 16 apprenticeships and two graduated traineeships, giving local young people valuable experience of working in this thriving and rewarding industry.”

Green light for £34.5m community campus in Cumbernauld

General View from WestAn agreement has been reached to develop a new £34.5 million high school combined with a theatre and arts venue in Cumbernauld.

The Community Campus, to be built on the site of the existing Cumbernauld High School,
will be home to a purpose-built secondary education facility accommodating 950 students following the amalgamation during the 2014/15 school session of Cumbernauld and Abronhill High Schools.

It will also house a new theatre and arts venue for the Cumbernauld Theatre Trust Ltd which will contain a 400 seat main auditorium, box office and digital arts room, as well as performance and event spaces, administrative and support spaces.

Close Up View of Theatre WingThe project is the latest to be developed by construction and infrastructure-focused partnership, hub South West, on behalf of North Lanarkshire Council.

Cllr Frank McNally, North Lanarkshire Council’s convener of education, said: “the new Cumbernauld Academy and Theatre campus will become a much valued asset for the area. It demonstrates our commitment to giving our young people the best possible start as well as providing excellent facilities for the wider community.”

Michael McBrearty, chief executive of hub South West, said: “The Cumbernauld Community Campus will symbolise a new era in the history and future development of the town.”

Close Up View of Theatre Wing 2Building of the new facility will be led by Morrison Construction.

Operations director Allan Cunningham said: “We look forward to working closely with our partners, hub South West and North Lanarkshire Council, to deliver this exciting new development, our third in as many years.

“These excellent new facilities will provide a strong focal point for the local community and will provide students and staff with an exciting modern environment within which they can thrive.”

The Design, Build, Finance and Maintain (DBFM) contract for Cumbernauld Campus is the third in a series of large school projects designed and built by North Lanarkshire Council and hub South West following the successful delivery of Clyde Valley Campus and Greenfaulds High School.