Woodlands Meed College: ground-breaking event celebrates progress on new facilities at Burgess Hill special school

Pupils, teachers and West Sussex County Council representatives celebrated the progress being made on new facilities for Woodlands Meed College recently.

A special ground-breaking event took place at the Burgess Hill special school on Friday, May 13.

The attendees included: governors, West Sussex County Council leader Paul Marshall, Cabinet Member for Learning and Skills Nigel Jupp, Mid Sussex MP Mims Davies, contractor ISG, architect Haverstock and other invited guests.

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The County Council is leading and funding the £21.6m project to create improved facilities for 100 college pupils with special educational needs.

Speaking at the event, Nigel Jupp said: "I hope that this project will show you, the pupils, in your future life how things can materialise and change.

"A lot of people have provided a great deal of skill and enthusiasm to where we are today, and I really look forward to this time next year when I hope your chairman will be cutting the ribbon to open the college.”

A ceremonial spade was presented to college pupils Nathan Martin, Niamh Newman, William Jeffrey before they were given a tour.

Nathan said: “I think it’s good, it’s going to make a big difference to lots of people for a long time.”

Pupils, teachers and West Sussex County Council representatives at the ground-breaking event at Woodlands Meed College in Burgess Hill

Woodlands Meed head Adam Rowland said: “It’s brilliant that we’ve got William, Nathan and Niamh here to see this project and represent key stages 3, 4 and 5.

"The legacy that this building will provide for those pupils to provide the right environment, the right space for them to develop and grow and thrive is so, so important.”

Construction specialist ISG was commissioned to construct the new college through the Southern Construction Framework.

Richard Skone, regional director, ISG, said: “We are delighted to be working with West Sussex County Council and Woodlands Meed College to deliver this fantastic facility."

Pupils, teachers and West Sussex County Council representatives at the ground-breaking event at Woodlands Meed College in Burgess Hill

Construction began in late November 2021 and the foundations for the new college building have been laid.

The new hydrotherapy swimming pool is nearing completion and specialist facilities including all-weather pitches, a sports hall, outside play areas, a gym and amphitheatre will emerge in the coming months.

The work is on course for completion by spring 2023 with external works finished by autumn 2023.

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