Gwenfro Community Primary School in Wrexham has undergone a £4.9 million makeover, replacing the existing 1950s school. Funded by the local authority and Welsh Government through its 21st Century Schools and Education Programme, the new school amalgamates juniors and infants, and provides state of the art facilities for its pupils, as well as an energy efficient building, BREEAM rated ‘Excellent’.
The 21st Century Schools Programme aims to transform the learning experience of students, ensuring they are taught in classrooms with the technologies and facilities needed to deliver a 21st century curriculum. The project has been completed in two phases, with pupils and staff moving into the new school before the old one was demolished.
Offering increased capacity (the school can now take 315 pupils vs 301 before the upgrade) and providing an inspirational place to work and play, Gwenfro Primary School is a twostorey building, including nursery provision, seven classrooms, a shared hall facility and administrative accommodation. An exciting new hard and soft landscape playground has been built where the old school building once stood.
One of the main drivers behind the new school was the cost of repair and energy consumption in the 1950’s building. So, to meet its BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating, Gwenfro has been constructed in a highly sustainable way, including ‘fabric first’ design - an approach that focuses on maximising the performance of the components and materials that make up the building fabric before considering the use of mechanical or electrical building services systems. This helps to reduce capital and operational costs, improve energy efficiency and cut carbon emissions. The use of natural daylight and ventilation and the incorporation of solar photovoltaic panels to provide electricity, further enhance the school’s sustainability credentials.
In the bathrooms, a wide range of Twyford products have been chosen, some of which contribute to the BREEAM rating, which also takes into account energy and water use.
Twyford air button dual Flush and Twyford concealed cistern dual flush systems have been installed, providing a simple way to reduce water consumption. Twyford e100 round basins incorporating Sola ½ non concussive taps were also chosen, with the push button action preventing water wastage by turning off automatically – well-suited to public bathrooms, and easy for children to use.
Twyford’s Sola school rimless WCs, both closed and open fronted, have been installed throughout the new facilities. Rimless pans offer improved hygiene and easier cleaning; key for high volume areas where pupil health and safety is paramount. The open fronted variety have been designed for younger children, ideal for nursery and early years’ pupils.
In addition to the standard washrooms, Gwenfro also includes on ambulant Doc M cubicle, featuring Twyford’s Avalon back-to -wall rimfree® toilet and grab rails. The pan is in a contrasting colour to ensure ease of use for partially sighted users, as well as those with mobility issues.
Apart from Twyford, all plumbing (heating, hot and potable water) comes courtesy of Geberit Mepla multi-layered pipe, which combines the advantages of synthetic and metallic materials.
Corrosion-resistant and light, Geberit Mepla is more inherently stable and durable than plastic pipes. Enabling fast work progress and subsequent economic advantages Geberit Mepla also ensures peace of mind as it is permanently leak proof.
With time constraints, budget considerations, sustainability, downtime and the practicality of the end product all high on the agenda when it comes to today’s school projects, anything that eases these burdens is key to specifiers and installers.
Twyford and Geberit can provide a one-stop piping and sanitary solution, with the latest energy efficient, robust and easy-to-install products, all delivered from one reliable source, making life easier for installers and giving peace of mind to the customer. Local authorities and other investors can be sure these products will stand the test of time (Twyford sanitaryware has a 25-year guarantee), and pupils and teachers will experience safe and practical solutions designed to meet a school’s specific needs.