Robert May’s School

Odiham, Hampshire

Project Details


Hampshire County Council

Project Manager

Hampshire County Council


Hampshire County Council


Morgan Sindall



Contract Period

66 weeks

Procurement Type

Construct only

Form of Contract

JCT 2011 SFC/Q

Project Summary

Expansion of Robert May’s Secondary School in Odiham by 1FE, providing an open and welcoming entrance to give the school a presence in the local community. The project included a two-storey new build block and refurbishment within the existing building. External works included demolition of the caretaker’s bungalow and remodelling of the carpark; as well as works to create a Multi- Use Games Area (MUGA) to the rear of the school and a grass playing field on a steeply sloped area adjacent to the school. All spaces were designed to be flexible and adaptable to meet the client’s requirements.

“We’ve thoroughly enjoyed working in partnership with Hampshire County Council to deliver this expansion to Robert May’s School. The new teaching block is a stunning addition to the school’s existing teaching facilities, providing pupils with a first-class environment to learn and get the most out of their educational journey. Robert May’s expansion was delivered under the SCF and we’re pleased to have worked effectively with SCF through this project’s life cycle, ensuring that every stage of the build aligned with both the council’s and school’s vision. The new building was completed ahead of schedule, allowing the school to use their new facility at the start of the autumn term, when an October half term handover was contracted. We hope that everyone at the school is delighted with the new building, which will serve generations of pupils in Odiham for many years to come.”

“We’ve been delighted by the thoughtful approach of the Morgan Sindall Construction site manager, Jim Cain, and the way in which his team made sure that construction fitted around school schedules so well. The groundworks, which were extensive, were done to a very high specification in what seemed like record time. A local passer-by told us that the school now looks like a University. We’re very happy with that!”

Key Challenges

The school was on a very tight site with high levels of coach drop-off demands.  To enable the new coach drop-offs, a new car park was built first where the caretaker’s bungalow was located.

Maintaining pupil/pedestrian safety and routes during construction was an important challenge to overcome.  These routes were improved during the construction works by directing them along new hoarded/fenced routes to and from the buses and emergency access routes to muster points.

Project Takeaways

Our Successes
  • The project team remained the same throughout, which was hugely beneficial to working relationships and information flow between the client and contractor.
  • A series of early workshops were very beneficial to the project ensuring all parties understood the brief.
  • The brief was clear from the start and did not change after the feasibility report. This meant stability of the design approach and a successful hierarchy of detail could be followed which was well matched by the funding made available. The common element of design strategy has gone on to inform other projects.
Our Learnings
  • A security workshop held at an early stage would have been beneficial, covering the use of the site out of school hours, enabling this to be priced in at tender stage.
  • It is imperative the HCC technical review is completed before the billing process, as change is difficult to record once in progress.
  • 3D model to 2D information is not as well coordinated as 3D to 3D information.
  • The landscape scheme (and other big ticket items) should be reviewed before tender with the quantity surveyor and senior landscape architect.
  • Acoustic insulation should be between floors and not behind external walls.
  • A procurement programme would have been beneficial for the design team.
  • The school should have early notice for making internal design decisions.
Value Added
  • The proactive approach and professional team meant communication between all parties, including the design team and the school, was productive with relationships maintained to the end of the project.
  • The contractor’s commercial manager and contracts manager fully integrated into the design team ensuring the team benefitted from their knowledge, thus giving the school trust in the process.
  • Actively informing the design specification and providing professional advice, aided the design team to create an affordable scheme.
  • Support from the preconstruction team was very good, suggesting practical ideas to de-risk the project early.

KPI’s & Statistics

ContractGateway 3 Planning Gateway 4 Contract AgreementVariation
Time69 weeks66 weeks-3 weeks