Category Archives: project management

Revamped Reception & Administration Area at Ivel Valley School

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015

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Ivel Valley is an Area Special School for children of all ages with complex learning needs. Located on two different sites in Biggleswade, the school has a number of pupils with sensory and physical difficulties, and also some students and young people on the autistic spectrum.

A project to improve the secondary site reception, administration and visitor areas has just been completed. We developed designs for a 75m2 single storey extension and integrated the new rooms into the existing school and reception areas. Facilities now include larger offices, a consulting room for visiting professionals and an improved reception area. PCMS Design carried out the construction management, liaising regularly with the building contractor and key stakeholders at the school including governors and staff.

Headteacher Julie Mudd said: “I am very pleased with our new administration block, and it’s transformed the areas in which we greet parents and other visitors. Our admin staff now have a pleasant area in which to work, and the pupils have responded well to the improved space with carefully considered colour scheme and finishes. Everything was carried out on time and with the minimum of fuss.”

Brand New Pre-School for Leighton Buzzard

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

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Greenleas School in Kestrel Way, Leighton Buzzard is a thriving primary school in the middle of a still expanding residential development. Following a process that involved building design, planning liaison and construction management, we are delighted to announce that a new free-standing nursery building has just been completed on the school site.

The official opening ceremony took place on Friday 16th January, and the ribbon was cut by local MP Andrew Selous together with help from some of the teachers and pre-school children.

PCMS designed the new single storey building, specified the materials to be used and project managed the build. The building comprises a large play room with separate office, kitchen and WCs. PCMS also designed a canopy across the back of the building, which provides sheltered outdoor play space.

This is the latest in a series of projects that we have completed for Greenleas School, both at Kestrel Way and at the school’s other site in Derwent Road.

Both teachers and children are very pleased with their new home: “It’s great to have a new building which has been specifically designed with small children in mind; it incorporates safety features and is a wonderfully light and airy space to work and play in” said Headteacher Rebecca Clarke.

New Scout Building Rises from the Ashes

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

When in 2007 fire destroyed the old timber Scout Hut in the Buckinghamshire village of Long Crendon, PCMS was asked by the leaders of 1st Bernwood Forest Scout Group to design and project manage a replacement. Now, exactly 5 years after the blaze that destroyed the hut, the Scout Group has a brand new purpose-designed building to move into.

PCMS first took a detailed brief to develop a user requirement list for the Scout building. The site had various challenges; for instance, there were space limitations due to the small plot and adjoining residential neighbours. Because the site is within a Conservation Area, the support of the Long Crendon Preservation Society and also the Parish Council was crucial, and PCMS helped to enlist support by attending meetings to present the project proposal.

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Steaming Ahead

Monday, May 16th, 2011

PCMS is currently working on an interesting project for Chinnor & Princes Risborough Railway (C&PRR). The historic railway is a popular local tourist and railway enthusiast’s centre on the edge of the Chiltern Hills which opens at weekends and holiday times offering steam and diesel train rides along a stretch of some 3.5 miles of former Great Western Railway track

When Taylor Wimpley Homes announced plans to redevelop a large site immediately adjacent to the railway at the former Chinnor Cement Works, an opportunity arose to make some additions and improvements to the railway’s buildings

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New Year, New Children’s Centre!

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

Another Sure Start Childrens Centre project has just been successfully completed at St Marys VC Lower School in Stotfold, Bedfordshire.

Red Bear Childrens Centre offers a range of workshops, training sessions, outreach services and general helpful advice to families with children under 5 years old. St Marys Lower School has always been actively involved with the local community, and so provided an ideal location for the Children’s Centre.

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New Nursery Building Delivered in Record Time!

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010


When Bedford Borough Council offered Footsteps Nursery the opportunity to move to a new location they jumped at the chance. The only proviso was that it had to be achieved in just six months before the start of term in September and this included obtaining planning permission, removing an old modular unit, and designing, constructing and fitting out a new building.

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New Sure Start Children’s Centre in Sandy

Wednesday, January 20th, 2010


The Bedfordshire town of Sandy has recently seen the opening of a new Children’s Centre. PCMS were commissioned by the Early Childhood Intervention & Prevention team at Central Bedfordshire Council to design a purpose-built Sure Start Children’s Centre in the grounds of Laburnum Lower School. The site had limited space, so after carrying out a detailed feasibility study we proposed extending an existing wing of the school in a sympathetic way so as not to affect the overall profile and appearance of the old brick school building. This also minimised the impact on the school grounds and play areas.

Construction works were carried out by Meadsway Construction Ltd of Bedford, whilst PCMS acted as project manager and CDM Co-ordinator.

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Acorn Pre-School Celebrate First Year in New Home

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009


Acorn Pre-School, which is based in the town of Shefford in Bedfordshire, recently celebrated the first anniversary of moving into their permanent home. PCMS helped them to design a new building to provide enough space for 30 children which also incorporated a kitchen area, toilets, meeting room and separate office. PCMS specified internal fixtures and fittings, carried out a tendering process with local construction firms, and managed the build contract throughout.

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New Meeting Room at Shefford Lower School

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009


The construction of a new meeting room has recently been completed at Shefford Lower School in Bedfordshire.

PCMS helped to overcome a number of design and sequencing challenges at the outset to ensure that the project ran smoothly. Despite the school having been extended a few years ago, previous meeting space had been turned into an IT suite there were limited options for building elsewhere on the school site.

The solution was to infill some ‘dead space’ in a small courtyard area. A set of doors and a window were re-used, and building materials such as bricks and roof tiles were carefully matched with the existing school to achieve a seamless appearance with the new extension.

Best of all, in order to minimise disruption PCMS carefully programmed the construction works to coincide with school holidays. So re-siting of the door, window and path was carried out during the Autumn ½ term holiday, following by digging of the foundations in February and finally the walls, roof and interior fit-out were completed during the Easter break.

The School is very pleased with the finished result. Headteacher Tracey Callender said: “PCMS were on hand to offer reliable advice and expertise from the initial stages and throughout the project, and I would certainly use PCMS again for any similar work at the school.”