Blog: Project of the Year +£10m SECBE Awards 2019 finalist - Woodmansterne School

02 May 2019

sponsored by Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield

Woodmansterne Secondary School - submitted by Willmott Dixon

A delighted customer, a perfect product and personal growth were the key objectives on this project but the overriding ambition was to create a legacy. The team set out to deliver a perfect building and ensure that community projects and curriculum would continue long after the project was completed.

The team then focused on bonding the customer with the supply chain and all stakeholders, prior to the main build commencing. They entered a team in to the Crash Charity dragon boat race, raising several thousands of pounds for the charity.

They then set out a vision of the legacy that could be left behind for the community with ideas like the community fridge, the Urban Beach School and Agile Working, encouraging more women into the industry. This resulted in two scores of 47 / 50 from the considerate constructor’s scheme, a record total for Willmott Dixon. Alongside this, they completed their biggest community project - the refurbishment of the Brixton Soup kitchen.

The planning and sequencing on the project has been some of the best seen by Willmott Dixon, which was the driving force behind the continuously early, defect-free handovers. This culminated in the customer gaining access 10 weeks before the contract dates, and practical completion seven week early.

With seven defect-free handovers completed early, they are helping to raise their customers expectations of a defect-free product every time. They employed a joint snagging system with the Clerk of Works to ensure a collaborative approach also agreeing prior to any inspections that there be no more than three snags per room found by the clerk of works or the inspection would be cancelled.

The health and safety performance of the project was extremely high, with no reported accidents during the project. One area of innovation was using the BIM model for a training session with the roofing contractors prior to their commencement. This was to highlight the roof penetrations and high risk areas, ensuring the best method of fall prevention was in place prior to allowing access to the high risk area.

The focus on team members visiting other sites on a regular basis to gather best practice not only helped the young team members personal growth and experience but also helped Willmott Dixon pull the best practice together to ensure valuable lessons are learnt for all projects.


  • Early handovers – 7 weeks for the main school building
  • Defect-free handovers – 7 sectional completions during the project all completed defect free
  • CCS Scores 47 / 50 twice – a new record total for Willmott Dixon

For more details:

Visit Willmott Dixon.

The SECBE 2019 Building Project of the Year over £10m Award is sponsored by Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield.

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