Builders dig up the past at new college

This Is Wiltshire: Craig Madders, site supervisor, is discovering the Great Western Mill’s Victorian past as the  new University Technical College takes shape Craig Madders, site supervisor, is discovering the Great Western Mill’s Victorian past as the new University Technical College takes shape

WHILE work on the new University Technical College is progressing well, the process of transforming one of the town’s most historic buildings has thrown up some surprises.

Being built on the old Great Western Mill Site, off Bristol Street, the UTC will cater for 600 students aged 14 to 19 and focus on offering an engineering based education.

It will see a new structure built inside the original structures.

Last month builders discovered a nineteenth century multitubular boiler still in decent condition underneath the old building while the task of putting a new building up has presented some of its own challenges.

“I’ve obviously never found anything like that before,” said site manager Craig Madders.

“We were digging a trench around to lay the foundations when we came across it. I think the UTC is looking to see if Swindon Heritage want to make use of it.

“Putting a new building inside of an old one is presenting a few challenges. We need to make sure there is no extra weight put on the old building while making sure the new one is not too light to cope with the wind which will be created.

“Some of the beams in the original structure are from 1868 but still going strong. You will be able to see them when the final building is finished.”

This Is Wiltshire:

Tonnes of earth being moved to make way for the new building, which is taking shape on the site of the old Great Western Mill

Away from the construction site, progress is being made on making sure everything is ready in time for its September opening.

So far there are more than 150 declarations of interest with more than 70 signed up. From February 1 students will start being informed if they have places, although applications can still be put through after that date.

“It’s just been fantastic so far and I am really pleased with the amount of local support we have received,” said Angela Barker-Dench, the UTC’s principal.

“I have been pleased with the number of applications and more people are contacting us by the day to find out more or to register.

“It’s been hard work raising the profile as we have no Ofsted reports or league tables to fall back on but now people are aware of what we are about the interest is growing.

“Soon we will be able to announce large parts of the new curriculum which will encompass many of the new engineering courses the Government have announced this year.”

Angela will be holding walk-in sessions for anyone who wants to find out more information every Thursday from 4pm until 7pm at the Oxford Brookes University Building in Ferndale Road.

Comments (5)

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9:35am Thu 23 Jan 14

LordCharles says...

Tonnes of earth? I thought this was England with tons of earth. Don't like the insidious creepage of the European Union metric system. I suppose my shoe sizes will be metric next. Doh! They already are.
Tonnes of earth? I thought this was England with tons of earth. Don't like the insidious creepage of the European Union metric system. I suppose my shoe sizes will be metric next. Doh! They already are. LordCharles
  • Score: 0

10:25am Thu 23 Jan 14

The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man says...

How does a building "create" wind?
How does a building "create" wind? The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man
  • Score: 0

10:31am Thu 23 Jan 14

PJC says...

The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man wrote:
How does a building "create" wind?
By creating channels for the higher air pressure to move to lower pressure areas. Have you never been down Canal Walk?!
[quote][p][bold]The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man[/bold] wrote: How does a building "create" wind?[/p][/quote]By creating channels for the higher air pressure to move to lower pressure areas. Have you never been down Canal Walk?! PJC
  • Score: 3

10:36am Thu 23 Jan 14

PJC says...

LordCharles wrote:
Tonnes of earth? I thought this was England with tons of earth. Don't like the insidious creepage of the European Union metric system. I suppose my shoe sizes will be metric next. Doh! They already are.
But did they mean Tonnes or Tons, since they are different weights?
[quote][p][bold]LordCharles[/bold] wrote: Tonnes of earth? I thought this was England with tons of earth. Don't like the insidious creepage of the European Union metric system. I suppose my shoe sizes will be metric next. Doh! They already are.[/p][/quote]But did they mean Tonnes or Tons, since they are different weights? PJC
  • Score: 2

6:43pm Thu 23 Jan 14

John~R says...

PJC wrote:
LordCharles wrote:
Tonnes of earth? I thought this was England with tons of earth. Don't like the insidious creepage of the European Union metric system. I suppose my shoe sizes will be metric next. Doh! They already are.
But did they mean Tonnes or Tons, since they are different weights?
There's not a lot of difference between the metric tonne (1,000 kg) and the imperial ton (2240 lbs). 1 tonne = 0.9842065 tons.

Given that the UK construction industry went metric years ago, I expect they said tonnes but if you prefer to think in tons then use the same numbers and you won't be far out.
[quote][p][bold]PJC[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]LordCharles[/bold] wrote: Tonnes of earth? I thought this was England with tons of earth. Don't like the insidious creepage of the European Union metric system. I suppose my shoe sizes will be metric next. Doh! They already are.[/p][/quote]But did they mean Tonnes or Tons, since they are different weights?[/p][/quote]There's not a lot of difference between the metric tonne (1,000 kg) and the imperial ton (2240 lbs). 1 tonne = 0.9842065 tons. Given that the UK construction industry went metric years ago, I expect they said tonnes but if you prefer to think in tons then use the same numbers and you won't be far out. John~R
  • Score: 2

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