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Wed May 18 2022

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Preston school to be net zero in operation

2 Dec 21 Willmott Dixon has won a £21m contract to build a school in Preston that is designed to be ultra-sustainable.

The new Tarleton Academy
The new Tarleton Academy

The new Tarleton Academy in Preston will be built by Willmott Dixon on land alongside the existing school. When the new building is ready for use – September 2023 if all goes to plan – the old school building will be knocked down.

The new school, procured using the Department for Education (DfE) construction framework, will have 36 classrooms  and capacity for 750 pupils. Sports facilities will include a 20-metre swimming pool, a fitness suite and a multi-use games area. 

The new Tarleton Academy is designed to be net-zero carbon in operation, thanks to an airtight building envelope with triple glazed windows.  It will be powered by both ground source and air source heat pumps.  On the roof will be 1,500 sq m photovoltaic solar panels.

Willmott Dixon will monitor energy performance for two or three years after handover to ensure that it lives up to expectations.

Tarleton Academy is the latest in a line of eco education project for Willmott Dixon.  It built the £38m Harris Academy in Sutton, the UK’s largest Passivhaus accredited secondary school. It also built Hackbridge Primary School, the UK’s first Passivhaus ‘Plus’ school, which consumes only 75% of the 100% renewable energy it generates, selling the remainder back to the grid.

Last month, the contractor was also appointed for a £29m net-zero carbon school build at Silverwood School’s Rowde campus in North Wiltshire, extending the existing campus to provide facilities for 350 pupils with special educational needs and disabilities by September 2023.  

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