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Project Location

Client: Board of Governors, Poole High School
Contract Value: £420,000
Year completed: 2014
Expertise: Refurbishment, Education Facilities

Poole High School

In recent years, the Poole High School site has benefitted from significant investment and as a result has seen extensive expansion and refurbishment programmes.  This project comprised of the modernisation (internally and externally) of multiple stacked adjoining portacabins.  The objective was to improve the lifespan of what were essentially temporary buildings, with improvements to aesthetics, functionality and thermal properties.        

Our works included:

External works:

  • The installation of Garland roofing and a rainwater goods system
  • Insulation and overclad with cedar and Rock Panel rainscreen (the building was finished in colours to complement surroundings)
  • The installation of new marine grade aluminium windows and doors
  • The construction of a new porch entrance and associated ramps/steps
  • The provision of new hardstandings, fencing and landscaping on completion


Internal works:

  • The complete strip of fixtures, fittings and equipment
  • Minor demolition and alterations to room layouts, improving functionality
  • Mechanical and electrical installations and data layout (including relocation of WC facilities)
  • The installations of new suspended ceilings throughout
  • Decorations and flooring throughout



Throughout the project, the aging cabin buildings constantly required the SWH Build team to think ‘outside of the box’ and work closely with the client team with regards to design adaptation.

The works took place at the school from May until August, with SWH Build successfully working to a non-negotiable deadline to coincide with the start of a new school year. 

SWH Build was up against the clock from the outset, with the additional challenge of working within a live school environment.  To ensure that works caused minimal disruption, we implemented complete site segregation and worked closely with school management to ensure that our louder works were programmed outside of exam periods.  The SWH Build team has extensive experience of completing works in active education environments, with a focus on ensuring the safety of all parties with minimal disruption to everyday activities. 

Other challenges for the SWH team included; planning large material deliveries around busy school movement times (start, finish and break periods), as well as negotiating extremely restricted access to the project building.

As a result of the successful works, mid-way into the project SWH Build was asked to complete a second project within the timescale; converting and refurbishing the existing caretaker’s house into an inclusion unit for the children at the school. This additional work ran alongside the original project.

Both projects were successfully completed on time and the SWH Build team had a very positive impact on the staff at Poole High School, with the Site Manager being invited to join the Board of Governors as a Consultant for Build and Maintenance.

Project Location

Client: Board of Governors, Poole High School
Contract Value: £420,000
Year completed: 2014
Expertise: Refurbishment, Education Facilities