Chaddesden Park Primary School

Chaddesden Park Primary School

School washroom dryers deliver energy efficiency, maintenance and safety boost

The UK’s latest school building programmes have enabled architects, specifiers and business managers to apply new, more advanced technologies to ensure much of the wastage experienced in school operations of the past can be avoided. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the creation of the new Chaddesden Park Primary School in Derby, which opened in June following a two-year building programme.

Hundreds of schoolchildren are benefiting from improved school facilities here thanks to the Priority School Building Programme, a scheme in which Derby City Council partnered with the Education Funding Agency and main contractor Bowmer and Kirkland. The collaboration has worked together successfully to deliver six new schools across the city in a programme valued at £28 million.

In creating the new Chaddesden Park Primary School, the city council’s education department has been able to conclude the merger of two separate schools, a plan which was initiated in 2014 as part of a programme to improve the quality and efficiency of schools city-wide. The new two-storey building has been built to the latest building standards and provides 2100 sq. m. of floor space accommodating 402 pupils ranging from the ages of 3-11.

With the teaching staff and school management team being only too aware of the operational challenges that the previous 1960s buildings had presented, they were very keen to ensure the products specified throughout the building ticked all the boxes for reliability, practicality, safety and energy efficiency. This focus extended to the washrooms which is where the school has experienced some remarkable improvements.

The two floors provide classrooms and support facilities for different key stage groups, with infants accommodated on the ground floor and juniors upstairs. Each floor has its own washroom but both are equipped to be low maintenance, safe and energy efficient thanks to the installation of Biobot and Ecodriers from Derby firm

Joyce Gallagher, Chaddesden Park Primary School Business Manager explains:

“The two previous school buildings were 60 years old and had gone beyond their efficient service life, so moving to the new building was transformational for everyone. The team behind the school’s development left no stone unturned when it came to selecting the products and services that would best help the city council’s overarching goal of minimising operating costs, and our washroom design and specification was a particular focus.

“The washrooms in our previous school buildings utilised paper towels for the children to dry their hands. This created daily problems for us – at the simplest level, washrooms needed to be cleaned and tidied at very frequent intervals as the children disposed of their used paper towels on the floors rather than in the bins provided.

“Paper towels had to be replenished frequently too which was not always practical in a busy school and the consumption level meant we were spending a large amount on towels every year. So reducing this cleaning and replenishment regime was something we knew we had to address a priority for the new building in order to run more efficiently.

“The towels were also the cause of toilet blockages which resulted in numerous plumbing call-outs – this made a significant dent in the school’s annual maintenance budget.”

The school opted to install the latest generation of low energy hand dryers to avoid the issues it had experienced with paper towels. These were supplied by and installed by Derry Building Services, a division of Bowmer & Kirkland and one of the most technically advanced mechanical and electrical design and build contractors in the UK.

Joyce continues:

“The Biobot and Ecodriers were primarily chosen because of the potential for savings on paper towels, plumber call-outs and cleaner routines, but they also gave us the opportunity to help educate children about the importance of environmental savings given the reduction in wastage and application of low energy technology. This was particularly so with the Biobots which feature a colourful educational back-board which helps encourage the children to use the wash their hands to use the dryers.

“The new school may only be a few months into its life but the results so far are fantastic. Compared to our old school buildings, the washrooms are tidier, safer, more attractive to visit and cost us far less to operate and maintain. The energy savings will become apparent as they are monitored over time, but we expect the dryers to make an important contribution to helping us minimise our carbon footprint longer term and reduce our energy consumption.”

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