4 Classroom Extension, The Downs School, Wraxall

Construction Value – £0.45m

Kitto Construction Ltd was invited to re-appraise the original scheme on a design and build basis to establish whether the school’s budget was achievable. Kitto prepared a feasibility study which confirmed the budget could be achieved and received an order in early May 2014 to allow detailed design to commence prior to starting on site in July 2014.

The Downs School - 4 classroom extension

Front Elevation


The scheme included the construction of 4 classrooms, 2 pairs of cloakrooms and circulation space connecting the new building with the existing classroom block. The new extension was approximately 260m2 and was single-storey. The external walls were constructed from Blockwork and Cedar cladding with Timber Sash windows. The roof was a pitched concrete tile roof above the classroom and a single ply roof above the circulation space and cloakrooms. The scheme also included a number of roof lights to bring more light into the rooms.


One of Four Classrooms

During the design process, Kitto introduced a number of design ideas, such as changing the roof construction from trusses to a simple cut roof to increase the floor to ceiling height in the classroom, improve acoustics and allow a simpler detail around the roof lights in the classroom saving cost and time. Kitto also introduced underfloor heating as this saved cost and more suitable than a traditional radiator system.

The scheme was located within the middle of the school and constructed during the winter term, and the Kitto team arranged deliveries and construction operations to prevent any disruption to the operation of the school. This included arranging deliveries outside of school drop-off and collection times and minimising the size of their compound to allow access for the school staff and pupils to another part of the school. Kitto Joinery Ltd manufactured the bespoke sash windows and fitted furniture in the cloakroom.

The scheme started on site in early July 2014 and was completed on time and on budget on the 8 December 2014 despite a 5 day delay due to excessive rain in September.