Bolton-based Seddon has completed the £900,000 project to replace a 20-year-old hydrotherapy pool at Delamere School, to benefit pupils with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) in Trafford. The project was funded by Trafford Council via the Department for Education’s SEND capital funding. Delamere School provides 80 places to support local children and is one of only three dedicated SEND schools in Trafford.
Designed by Bowker Sadler Architecture (BSA), delivery of the project was also aided by structural engineer, Ridge and Partners LLP, and specialist pool installers, Unique Pool Ltd. The new hydrotherapy pool replaces the previous facilities which were well-worn and no longer fit-for-purpose. The existing pool area has been remodelled to provide a larger, more inclusive, and spacious changing facility. The extension houses a new level-deck pool to replace the existing one, which sat 600mm above floor level.
Its design provides a level threshold and a modern pool hoist lift from the changing rooms into the pool, making direct entry into the water both easier and safer for those with reduced mobility. The new pool incorporates a stimulating bubble bed, colour changing/mood lighting, an audio system and image projection to enhance the sensory experience for the children.
The hydrotherapy facility will prove to be a huge asset for the school by providing a wealth of benefits for children with SEND, helping to maintain joint and muscle movement and contributing to positive wellbeing. Fixed poolside seating offers parents and carers a comfortable place to watch their loved ones.
During the build, the Seddon team worked with local sub-contractors and their own apprentices to offer live experience of the plumbing trade and to give a boost to local businesses, while the site management worked closely with the school to minimise disruption and maintain safety. This was commended by the headteacher throughout the build.
“Bringing a project like this to life is an absolute pleasure. It was great to do our bit to improve these important facilities that benefit the school so much, by providing a more modern and usable space the children can get the very best support,” said John Shannon, divisional director at Seddon.
“We were also able to undertake a site viewing with members of the children’s School Council, where they could see the works that were ongoing. Under the current circumstances, this really helped them to look forward to the new facility being completed, and I believe they were even reporting back to the staff about what pool toys and floats they want to add. We hope everyone at Delamere School and in the wider community can make the most of the new pool for years to come.”
Pupils and staff were also given the opportunity to visit the site, as part of a safe, socially distanced tour while everything was under construction. The school plans to offer their improved and modern facilities to members of the local community, including plans for parent and baby classes. This will be scheduled around the school’s timetable and will maximise the benefit provided by this development. This will support the local community and generate much-needed income for the school to offset running costs and provide commercial sustainability for the facility.
“The build has been completed on time by Seddon, which is unbelievable in the context of COVID. BSA inspired confidence that they understood the issues with our previous pool, and that they were experienced enough to deliver a high quality, bespoke product. They consulted at every stage, kept us very well informed and really cared about the success of our project and understood how much it meant to me and my children,” added Sally Burston, headteacher at Delamere School.