Contractors on site of the new £5.3m Heathfield Primary School off Highbury Road on Kensall Drive in Basford have held a ‘bolt tightening’ ceremony to mark the placement of the final piece in the building’s steel frame, just two months after construction work commenced.

The event, which was hosted by Wates and attended by representatives from Nottingham City Council, took place on the site of the former Henry Mellish School where building work is being carried out.

Work began at the end of last year and has so far seen Wates install 106 tonnes of steel, the equivalent of 60 elephants, including 576 beams, connected by 2872 bolts.

Laid end to end, the steel frame would stretch 2,142 metres, four times the distance between City Ground and Trent Bridge cricket ground. Once complete, the building will include flexible teaching spaces and a new sports hall.

The two-form entry school will become an expansion to the existing Heathfield Primary and Nursery School on Scotland Road and will provide 420 additional primary school places and a 52-place nursery.

Moving on to the next phase of works, Wates will now commence the building envelope, including block and brickwork and installation of windows, doors and roofing. Completion is expected to be reached at the end of this year.

Designed by Nottingham-based architects, CPMG, the project forms part of Nottingham City Council’s wider programme to expand its education estate to increase its capacity for new school places.

Councillor Sam Webster, Executive Assistant for Schools, said: “This new building will deliver outstanding facilities for young people and the wider community. Investment in our schools is crucial and Heathfield Primary will have all of the resources to enable pupils to realise their potential and access new and exciting opportunities. This expansion is part of the Council’s wider investment to increase primary school provision cross the city.”

Richard Scarrott, Business Unit Director, Wates Construction Midlands, commented: “Nottingham City Council’s expansion of Heathfield Primary School is first and foremost designed to increase the number of pupil places, however with this comes an excellent opportunity to significantly enhance the learning environment for the children.

“Wates has been building and refurbishing schools across Nottingham for a number of years. Through this we’ve gained experience in understanding the individual needs of schools, which places us as the ideal contracting partner to deliver this exciting scheme.”

Wates was appointed as main contractor through the East Midlands Property Alliance (empa) framework agreement, which is managed by Scape. The framework was established in 2008 by local authorities to improve the cost-efficiency of property services for local communities.