Hailsham students in housing challenge

Students in their hard hats
Students in their hard hats
  • Building site visit inspires project for science contest
  • Insight into skills that can be used in almost any work sector
  • Science and maths can be useful for a career in construction

Students from Hailsham Community College (HCC) were able to get first-hand experience of sustainable building methods on a visit to the Bouygues UK building site at Bentley Grange in Battle Road.

The visit to the Extra Care scheme venue also allowed them to learn about the different techniques for managing a building site.

The visit, organised by Wealden District Council, was part of the CREST Award, a national scheme to help young people to discover their passion for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics that HCC is undertaking through the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB).

The programme aims to show students how science and maths can be useful for a career in construction and involves undertaking a project to demonstrate the students’ understanding of how design and engineering processes work.

This includes undertaking a site visit and then demonstrating key project skills by developing a housing plan for a 2,000 square metre site including 10 homes using a minimum level of sustainable materials and techniques.

“The students thoroughly enjoyed learning about various elements of the construction industry thanks to their recent site visit,” said Natalie Clarke, Vice Principal of Hailsham Community College. “They are now working hard to put the theory into practice by designing their own sustainable housing project, which they will present at a regional science competition in June.

“The CREST Award really demonstrates how great things can be achieved when organisations work with us to support the development and aspirations of our talented young people.”

Nicholas Fowler, Head of External Training and Skills at Bouygues UK, said, “I was very impressed with the enthusiasm shown by the school and the students for the Crest Challenge. The ideas that the students will be covering and the approach to developing their project will give them an insight into skills that can be used in almost any sector in which they may choose to work in the future. I am looking forward to seeing their completed projects.”

The Bentley Grange development includes an Extra Care scheme of 45 one- and two-bedroom apartments, which will allow couples with different care needs to stay together and continue to be part of the community.

“Planned growth, sustainable housing and improving skills are all key building blocks in Wealden’s future plans and it’s great to see young people showing an interest and getting involved in all three,” said Cllr Roy Galley, Cabinet Member for Economic Development and Regeneration. “I fully encourage other local schools to get in contact with Wealden and find out how they can get involved in the CREST Awards.”

Any other schools interested in doing their CREST Award with CITB should contact Wealden’s Regeneration team by email, regeneration@wealden.gov.uk or phone 01323 443266. More information for young people about training options and apprenticeships can be found on the idecide website, www.wealden.gov.uk/idecide