Companies come together to increase facilities at an Essex School

Rail companies and engineering contractors have come together to assist a school in Essex by adding two train carriages to its grounds, providing extra space for students to learn.

The decommissioned carriages were lifted into the playground at Upshire Primary Foundation School in Waltham Abbey, Essex, at the end of October and are now undergoing a six-month refurbishment project to transform them into a classroom and a library.

The project was a joint enterprise between the school, Porterbrook, Modular Building Consultants, Network Rail and Taziker, who together provided project management, planning, design and groundworks.

After leasing carriages to train operators, Porterbrook then tries to repurpose them when they reach the end of their working life.  The company donated the carriages, which used to run on the King’s Cross to Edinburgh line, to the school for a nominal fee. 

Taziker provided services to enable the carriages to be installed successfully on site, including:

  • Removing existing fencing to allow access for plant and deliveries.
  • Installing temporary fencing to maintain security to the school grounds.
  • Excavating and landscaping.
  • Installing geotextile to meet requirements of the ground bearing pressure test.
  • Construction of shuttering and steel reinforced cages.
  • Installing rails ready for the carriages to be delivered.

Andrew Clow, Senior Project Manager at Taziker said, “To be involved in this community project for Upshire Primary Foundation School has been really rewarding.  Our operatives on site have been so enthusiastic and they’ve worked incredibly hard to get this work completed ready for the train carriages to be delivered.

“We’ve formed great, collaborative relationships with Network Rail, Modular Building Consultants, Railscape, Porterbrook and Railway Support Services during this project, and on behalf of Taziker, I’d like to say thank you to everyone involved for their efforts – including external suppliers such as Creteel, TECS and Bottomly Site Services Ltd.

Modular Building Consultants has project managed the installation on behalf of Upshire Primary Foundation School since November 2020, also taking on the role of Principal Contractor.

Claire Kirby, Commercial Manager at Modular Building Consultants said, “This is not a typical project that we undertake, however we are always up for a challenge!  We have been astounded by the interest this project has generated in the local community, and the generosity of organisations involved in this project. We look forward to seeing the children enjoy these fantastic facilities in the near future.”

There will be an Open Event at the school for media, contractors, and school representatives to attend on Monday 22nd November from 3.30-5.30pm.  The school plans to say thank you to all involved and give tours of the carriages.

Julie Hockley, Finance and Personnel Manager at Upshire Primary School said, “On behalf of the Governors, staff and pupils at Upshire Primary Foundation School, I would like to thank Taziker wholeheartedly for their contribution to our project. Not only have they made a fantastic job of the bases for our carriages but their moral support and presence at key times has been invaluable.  What an amazing company and team of people.”

Photo credit: Taziker

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