01 November 2011

Northamptonshire County Council is set to formally approve plans for ten county schools next in line for funding to improve the condition of their buildings under the Serial Build capital funding programme.

A meeting of the council’s cabinet next week (TUES 8 NOV) will be asked to approve both the plans and the process to tender the work.

The ten schools are among the 40 primary schools in the county categorised as “serial build” constructed to a certain specification in the late 1960s to mid 1970s and now all suffering from varying degrees of structural defects.

Councillor Andrew Grant, cabinet member for children, learning and skills, said: “We’ve categorised the serial build schools into three groups according to the severity of the defects.

“Seven schools have already had improvement work completed during the first phase of the serial build programme and another four - Great Doddington Primary, Kingswood Primary, Ruskin Infant and The Bramptons Primary – have contractors currently on site carrying out the remedial work.

The cabinet paper proposes that the ten Phase 3 projects are bundled in groups of two or three schools and tendered in these bundles using the council’s new procurement framework, which streamlines the process. The order of the projects has been determined using condition data, but also taking account of geography, so that there are economies of scale in the management of the projects.

The proposed order of work is:

  • Bundle 1: Oakway, Windmill and Millbrook
  • Bundle 2: Braunston and Southbrook
  • Bundle 3: Hardingstone, Cogenhoe and Whitefriars Bundle 4: Towcester and Yardley Gobion

If approved, the funding for the work will come from a £4.87m capital fund which will cover the repair costs at the ten phase three schools and the ongoing monitoring of the remaining category C schools.

Work would be scheduled for completion by December 2012.