GALLERY: Uffculme School's new art block
KILNS and easels have replaced gas taps and bunsen burners as part of the continued overhaul of a Mid Devon school.
What was once a standalone five-classroom science block is now a brand new art area and the transformation was ready in time for pupils' return to Uffculme School.
The building now boasts three new classrooms, a kiln room for pottery firing, toilet areas, an office and a spacious new eating area and internet cafe.
The styling of the art block will "help to promote creativity and stimulate the pupils' imaginations", school staff say, and the large classrooms present an industrial-style atmosphere, with steel roofing and hot water radiant panels on the ceilings.
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Headteacher Lorraine Heath said everybody is impressed with the new building and added: "It is a complete transformation, bearing no resemblance to the old, dilapidated block.
"The contractors have been fantastic working long days and weekends to complete it for the start of term. It has been wonderful to see pupils' reactions to the new space. We can't wait to see all the art work which the students will be producing in this wonderful new facility."
SWH Build, a division of South West Highways Ltd, carried out the work.
Ben Pyle, South West Highway's managing director, said: "We are delighted that we were chosen to deliver this exceptional project.
"I'm sure the students will enjoy an enhanced learning experience from the new facility which itself seems so creative. We worked hard to finish the scheme a week before schedule to hand the keys over to the school before the new term began.
"September ends an extremely busy period for us as we completed ten projects in time for the new school year."
Biology, chemistry and physics are already being taught in a brand new science block in Uffculme which was recently completed.
The new building's innovative, flexible design has increased the teaching provision and allows the children to be educated appropriately within one dedicated area.
It incorporates sustainable technologies, including solar panels, ground source heating, and rainwater harvesting.
Grainge Architects of Exeter designed the new building, which includes seven teaching laboratories, preparation rooms and staff facilities.