Northmoor Academy, Oldham

Client: Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council    |    Architect: BP Architecture    |    Contractor: Extraspace Solutions

How we got involved

Oldham MBC wanted a new primary school delivering within a very tight timescale.  The school was required to replace an existing college on a challenging sloping site in the heart of the town centre.  The new facility boasts a three-storey 600-student school, a nursery, a large sports hall, external hard and soft play areas and associated car parking.  Extraspace Solutions are an Irish-based company who carry out work all around the United Kingdom, and were looking for a local, reputable Structural Engineer to carry out the civil and structural engineering works on this project.

What we did

Given the tight deadlines and required programme, modular construction was the only option to ensure the project could be delivered on time.  The large sports hall was constructed using a steel frame to achieve the double-height space and large clear spans required to accommodate indoor sports facilities.

The former college was constructed over a redundant sewer approximately 5m deep and, rather than founding the proposed building on traditional piles, we recommended that the redundant sewer be removed and the demolition material from the former college used as fill beneath the proposed building.  The ground was then improved by vibro compaction.  This proved to be the most cost effective and sustainable solution.

Why we're proud of it

The project was particularly challenging due to the existing site constraints and stringent timescales, however we helped to achieve the project goals and create a new, much larger school that the town desperately needed.


Edge Structural Design joined the Extraspace team as our engineering partner for a project in Oldham to deliver Northmoor Academy. This was a difficult 3 tier site which was occupied by the former Grange Secondary School. The scope of works involved the development of the site to include all demolition, reshaping of ground, retaining walls, pathways, tiered external seating, gas membrane detailing, ground stabilisation and the construction of a new school. Edge were a key partner in the design element and continued on the project through the construction phase. The project was highly successful, delivered on time and within budget and we look forward to working with Edge on future projects    

Philip Hutton – Extraspace Solutions