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Steel signing at new Sunningdale School

A £13.3m new school is taking shape as part of the City Council's ongoing programme of investments and improvements for young people and families.

Sunningdale School steel signing

Sunningdale School is a complete new build at Clinton Place, Doxford. It is part of the council's £45m programme of school updates that's delivering life-changing facilities for young people.

The new Sunningdale is for children with severe learning and physical difficulties, designed for 120 pupils and have provision for 16 nursery places.

Ground works started in the summer and, following foundation works, its steel frame of girders has been going up. The project is being delivered by Kier and replaces outdated facilities at the school's old site in Springwell. It is due to open for the next academic year in September 2022.

The new Sunningdale has total floor space equivalent to around two football pitches, bigger class rooms, extra hall and therapy provisions including rebound therapy, hydrotherapy, light and sensory facilities and soft play. Every class will have a storage area for the mobility equipment that may be needed for the pupils with physical disabilities.

A steel signing has now taken place with pupils, staff and guests making their mark on one of the building's framework girders.

Sunderland City Council's Cabinet Member for Children, Education and Skills, Councillor Louise Farthing said: "Sunningdale looks after some of the city's most vulnerable young people. There is exceptional care and support from everyone at the school and the new building and all its facilities will ensure that pupils continue to be supported with the very best."

Enjoying the signing and site tour with pupils, headteacher James Waller said: "They were so proud to sign the steel frame and enjoyed seeing the large machinery in operation. The new building will have the space and facilities to continue to grow and develop our provision for some of the city's most vulnerable (but amazing) children."

As part of the City Council's school investments, a new £5.3m Willow Wood Primary in Witherwack opened in September, work is starting on the £6.7m Hetton Primary School, and major updates at both Barnes and Fulwell junior schools are being readied

Dan Doherty, Regional Director at Kier Regional Building North and Scotland, said: "The steel signing event marks an exciting point of the project and the commencement of the assembly of the steel frame.

"The team on site have worked incredibly hard to get to this point and now that the building works have passed this pivotal point, we can really start to see what a brilliant asset this new school will be to the community."

Sunningdale has been designed and managed by the council's Capital Projects team with support from Infrastructure and Property Services colleagues.


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