Faithorn Farrell Timms LLP

Additional Staff Accommodation at Palmers Green High School, London

Contract Administration services for the provision of additional staff accommodation

The Project

 Faithorn Farrell Timms have enjoyed a long and successful working relationship with Palmers Green High School for Girls and have undertaken a number of projects for them previously.  We were appointed in July 2015 to provide Contract Administration services for the provision of additional staff accommodation. 

The works comprised:

  • The strip out of the existing property
  • Construction of new third floor area including dormer window, stairs, etc.
  • Installation of new conservatory
  • Relocation of staff kitchen area from rear addition to main area of the staffroom
  • Refurbishment of existing areas. Decorations, floor coverings, etc.
  • New suspended ceilings to the ground and first floors
  • Installation of new air conditioning throughout the property
  • Installation of secondary glazing to the front elevation
  • Recovering of the rear addition’s flat roof

 The Challenges

  • The existing accommodation was contained within a two-storey converted Edwardian house and there was limited scope for extending the buildings
  • The works had to be substantially undertaken during the school holiday break in summer

The Solution

 Planning permission was required and, following consultation, revisions to the designs were needed to limit the impact of the loft extension. The walls had to be stepped back and amendments were needed to minimise the impact arising from the lost accommodation.

 The stakeholders reported that the premises were too hot during summer months and we appointed sub-consultant mechanical and electrical engineers to undertake a feasibility to assess the services capacity within the building and the most appropriate means to achieving heating and cooling for the extended premises. The tendering documentation was prepared making provision for contractor’s design for the mechanical and electrical installation. The detailed consideration of the capacity of the existing services ensured that the works could proceed on site without variation arising.

The project programme was too long to be achieved wholly within the summer months and the programme was developed, therefore, to ensure that the critical elements, including achieving a watertight building, was implemented over the summer period.

A logistics programme was achieved whereby other areas of the site were used for staff accommodation and offices before and after the summer period in order to ensure that best use was made of the six weeks’ summer holiday period.

The works were tendered to five contractors and only two tenders were returned. The two tenders were £256,130.00 and £257,012.00. As only two tenders were returned and they were very competitive a meeting was arranged with the Client to discuss the costs. After this meeting, the Client wanted to interview the lowest contractor prior to awarding the contract.

At the meeting, the lowest contractor discussed their business activity, typical works, contract values, etc. Following a meeting with the Contract Administrator, Client representative, school governors and the lowest contractor a decision was made to proceed with the works.