School science block in Bury St Edmunds

Seamans Building completed construction of a new two-storey science block at a Bury St Edmunds school – managing the project with little disruption to the school timetable.

The standalone science block at St Benedict’s Catholic School, designed by Hoopers Architects, included a science lab on each floor with a green stained timber circulation module at the front of the building.

The circulation module was designed with ‘board on board’ vertical cladding and houses an external staircase, a lift core, a first-floor balcony and ground floor WC and lobby space.

Ben Whatling, at Seamans, said: “This was a challenging build as work on the new science block took place during term time and one of the principal objectives was to maintain the functionality of the school and allow students to continue their studies uninterrupted.

“This included making sure access was maintained through a separate students’ entrance, ensuring accommodation of the school’s fire safety plans and guaranteeing the school site was secure at all times.

“It was a very compact site too, which only added to the project’s complexity.

“However, we like a challenge at Seamans – and really enjoyed constructing this superb new building.

“We were lucky to work with an excellent team at the school, who we formed a close working relationship with during our time on site, to ensure normal school operations were maintained throughout.

“This was a very interesting project to work on and we hope the students are enjoying their new science block.”

Thanks to excellent project management and strong communication between school staff, designers and Seamans, existing bus park routines and student drop offs were maintained throughout construction.

Hoopers architects, said: “Seamans offer a quality service, particularly well suited to the education sector, and we are extremely pleased with the end result.”

Work on the project was completed in February 2021.

Photography credit: Juli Richter