Category Archives: development

Planning granted for transformative extension

Tuesday, April 10th, 2018

We have recently secured planning permission from South Oxfordshire District Council for a house extension project in the market town of Thame.
Our client has recently purchased the semi-detached dwelling which is in need of considerable updating and renovation work, both inside and out. The aspiration is to create an extra bedroom and a larger, lighter modern kitchen and living space.
Our design involves removing a small existing single storey extension, and replacing it with a ‘wrap around’ part single and part two storey extension. This not only delivers the required extra bedroom and stylish ground floor living space, but also improves the appearance of the house from the rear garden.

Together with a more general renovation of the dwelling, the extension will transform it into a stunning family home. Our client is going to project manage the build himself, and we look forward with anticipation to seeing the project when completed later this year.

Successful Bid for CIF Funding!

Friday, April 6th, 2018

On the last day of term, one of our academy clients received excellent news: Government funding has been granted for the construction of two permanent build new classrooms. These will replace an aging 2-class modular unit, and will form part of a large site development project which is currently under construction.

One of the services we offer is the preparation of CIF (Condition Improvement Fund) bids for academies and sixth form colleges for capital works. Bids can be made for projects such as new roofing, heating systems, windows and doors, and also for capital projects such as replacement or refurbishment of classrooms.

Bids to the Condition Improvement Fund are always over-subscribed and the priority is to address significant condition need, and particularly to maintain safe and healthy school sites. A strong case has to be made to the Education & Skills Funding Agency to guarantee success.

The next round of CIF bid funding for 2019/20 projects should take place this autumn, but we can offer advice on how we can assist with your bid year round. If you are an academy or sixth form college, please get in touch for further information.

Construction Begins at Henlow Academy

Tuesday, January 9th, 2018

We reached an important milestone last week when members of our team made the first site visit to a new development project at Henlow Academy in Bedfordshire. This is following our successful application to Central Bedfordshire Council for planning permission on behalf of the Academy, to a building design we had produced.

Construction has begun on a four-court sports hall and new classrooms, which will form the cornerstone of a larger site development project. We have already overseen the construction of a link extension and internal alterations to the main building in 2017, but the Academy will benefit still further from the latest increase in sports provision and additional teaching space.

The principal contractor, Borras Construction, has made a start on foundation trenches with the first inspection completed by Central Bedfordshire Council Building Control. We are looking forward to seeing progress as we oversee the construction throughout the nine month build period.

New Pre-School Holds Official Opening

Friday, September 22nd, 2017

IMG_4712Parents and children were invited along to attend the official opening of a brand new pre-school building, which has just completed on the site of Clophill St Mary’s Lower School in Bedfordshire. PCMS Design has been involved in this project since its inception, working together with the school governors and management team on the design, planning application process, specification, tendering and finally the contract administration of the build.

There is a large bright playroom with kitchenette, plus a small admin area with office and store room. As the pre-school is on the site of a former Victorian school building, the design reflects some of those features with brick elevations and a slate roof, and tall feature windows at the end of the play room.

The official opening ceremony was attended by the Bishop of Bedford the Rt Revd Richard Atkinson, and staff are now preparing for the first wave of pre-schoolers.

Headteacher Karen Bingley said: “We were so pleased today to officially open our new pre-school building, which is a superb addition to the school site. PCMS Design has looked after the whole project for us, and assisted particularly in the later stages with contract administration. We now have a beautiful and well-designed building for our pre-school children, and the whole community will benefit from it for years to come.”

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Development at Henlow Academy Given Green Light

Thursday, September 14th, 2017

Henlow Academy LogoFollowing months of preparation, our team was very pleased yesterday when Central Bedfordshire Council’s Development Management Committee granted planning permission for the construction of a four-court sports hall with associated changing rooms, and also six new classrooms over two storeys at Henlow Academy in Bedfordshire.

This is a notable achievement for the Academy, which is seeking additional space to accommodate a temporary increase in pupil numbers over the next 3-4 years. It means that Phase II of the Academy’s site development programme can now go ahead. Phase I, which included a new link corridor and refurbishment works to several classrooms, was carried out this summer.

In addition to the sports hall, which will allow the Academy to substantially expand the range of sports on offer to pupils and the wider community, there will be improvements to the on-site car park, school bus bays and nearby public highway.

We are now looking forward to working with the Academy on the project management of the next stages, with a view to the classrooms being in operation for the 2018 academic year.

Proposed Development at Henlow Academy

Wednesday, July 12th, 2017

453-109 Rev B - 3D Visual_001Popular middle school Henlow Academy in Bedfordshire is looking to provide additional pupil places in the near future, and came to us to prepare a design and specification for an exciting site development.

A planning application has just been submitted to Central Bedfordshire Council for a new four-court sports hall with associated changing rooms and a six classroom, two-storey block. The sports hall will allow the Academy to substantially expand the range of sports on offer, particularly during the colder months, and will be a valuable addition to the local community because it will be available for sports teams and clubs to hire outside school hours.

As the Academy will be have a temporary increase in pupils over the next 3-4 years extra classroom space is required, and our design incorporates the latest in classroom technology such as interactive white boards, wi-fi connectivity and automatic light and CO2 sensors.

A considerable amount of consultation was carried out before submission of the application in order to iron out any potential design issues in advance.

We are hopeful for planning approval in September.

Green Light for Community Classroom Block

Friday, April 28th, 2017

hcfs logoPlanning permission has just been granted this week for a new free-standing community classroom block on the site of Hatfield Community Free School.

School staff appointed PCMS Design when realised they needed a building close to existing playing fields to serve as additional classroom space, and also to provide some shelter and changing areas for the adjacent pitches. Our feasibility process identified a suitable site, a concept design was approved, and we negotiated with the Planning Department at Welwyn Hatfield District Council to iron out a number of planning issues prior to permission being granted.

Care has been taken to design a building which reflects that of the existing school, which was constructed 5 years ago. The wish is to proceed with construction as quickly as possible, in order to provide much needed classroom space.

Planning Permission for Improvements at Oakley Primary School

Friday, September 30th, 2016

model-overview-final-aug-planningAylesbury Vale District Council has this week granted planning permission for one of our Buckinghamshire educational clients. We applied on behalf of Oakley Primary School for consent to create a more presentable and secure main entrance for staff, pupils and visitors, improve the internal layout of the school office, and construct a new head teacher’s room.

Part of the scheme receiving consent at the same time includes external improvements to create a new footpath entrance for children and parents, and also to extend the staff car park.

PCMS Design hopes to move swiftly on to the technical specification, ahead of procuring suitable building firms on behalf of the school to carry out the construction works.

Chinnor Rugby Club Sports New Entrance!

Wednesday, September 21st, 2016

283-front-entrance-rotated-2Over the summer, PCMS Design has been working on a local project for Chinnor Rugby Club, which is based in Thame, South Oxfordshire.

The club has teams of all ages that play in both local and national leagues. There is a clubhouse building that acts not only as a team pavilion, but also has a popular bar and two function rooms which are hired out for events and functions. However, the managing committee had a real desire to improve the clubhouse to create a new welcoming entrance and stairway, a larger refurbished kitchen and also space for a club shop and store room.

The PCMS Design solution was a two-storey front extension which incorporated a new steel and glass staircase alongside an impressive entrance with double height windows and modern glazed entrance doors. As well as taking the club through the design and planning process, we carried out the contract administration and made regular visits to site to check on the progress of the construction firm, Classic Builders (Watlington) Ltd.

Ready just in time for the 2016 Autumn season, the clubhouse is now eminently presentable for visitors and club members and the new kitchen has already enabled the catering offer to be expanded.

Club President John Ashfield said: “Thanks to PCMS Design and all their design and project management experience, we now have a much improved clubhouse. Alex and his team were invaluable in helping us see our project through to completion on time and within budget.”

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New Classrooms for Biggleswade Academy

Friday, September 16th, 2016

biggleswade-academy-exterior-2Our project to deliver a new 3-classroom block at Biggleswade Academy in Bedfordshire has completed on time and within budget, opening last week for the start of the new school year.
Everyone involved has received praise for the transformation of this part of the school site, which formally housed a disused outdoor swimming pool and a modular unit. We have seen this project through from inception to completion; our involvement began at feasibility stage, when we produced concept designs for a free-standing building, and progressed through planning, tendering of a construction firm and contract administration. The principal contractor was Neville Special Projects of Luton.

The new building features a zinc-covered barrel shaped roof and off-white rendered walls. The interiors are bright and colourful, with acoustic wall and ceiling panels adding visual interest whilst helping to absorb excess noise. There are specialist facilities for the children too, including a changing/shower room with floor hoist. Each classroom has been provided with its own separate entrance, and outside there are play areas with Perspex canopies and a pencil fence in primary colours.

Deputy Principal Shelley Flynn said: “Our project had tight timescales in order to be ready for pupils and their teachers this September. PCMS Design were invaluable in managing the project process which, along with their superb design skills, has delivered a great building. The Academy now has a modern, well-designed classroom block that everyone is proud of.”

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