Ocean Academy

Borough of Poole / An Aspirations Academy

The McAvoy Group was responsible for the design, construction, commissioning and programme of Ocean Academy Poole An Aspirations Academy, which accommodates 340 pupils. It completed the structure in 62-weeks, from concept to reality.

Located on Constitution Hill Road, on the former Fourways site, in Parkstone, Poole, Ocean Academy is a three form entry junior school (ages 7-11) - opened in September 2015 with three classes with an objective to grow year on year into a 12 class school.

Throughout the project it was integral that McAvoy consulted all parties involved including local residents who were informed throughout the entire process and the Aspirations Academy Trust, which was given an instrumental role in construction input in terms of advising on spaces, colours, width of corridors and the use of different rooms.

  • Facility 340 - Place Academy
  • Building Size 1,865m2
  • Location Poole, Dorset
  • Time On Site 32 Weeks
  • Partners Blue-Sky Architects

The Offsite Solution

The building employs a modular design with 90% manufactured off-site in 10 weeks at The McAvoy Group’s production facilities. The project was designed within standard grids and room layouts to maximise build-ability.

Off-site wall panels were created for the traditional steel-frame hall areas and curtain walling was introduced where possible to increase wall construction efficiencies.

Early commissioning meetings provided input into the design stage to locate services in the right place when considering both installation and maintenance. External cladding was detailed accurately to allow a generous design without compromising programme.

Project Challenges

The complex facilities at Ocean Academy include a large hall, with staging area for performances and a studio area for dance and other activities, bright and inviting classrooms, smaller intervention rooms and a library/learning resource facility. A green outdoor environment which comprises raised flower beds for cultivating vegetables, a full size football/rugby pitch, a MUGA (Multi use games area) for other ball games and a ‘bug hotel’, habitats and environments for the science department’s needs.

Sustainability was incorporated into the project from the outset, with whole-life costing being completed at development stage and targets set for BREEAM Very Good compliance. Energy use was assessed both in design and during construction, resulting in a building which exceeds its target emissions levels in use, achieves a higher air leakage standard and an EPC rating of 29.

The project was registered as a Considerate Contractor scheme and awarded a “performance beyond compliance” certificate while supply chain members’ competency and commitment to H&S were regularly tested.

The Customer Perspective

“Ocean Academy is the first new school that the Borough of Poole has established. We needed the build because of our need for school places. We had a very tight timescale from procurement to establishing a new school. McAvoy have taken 33 weeks to put that in place. Staff, parents and children look forward to opening in September.
Local residents have been blown away by the new school. We’ve also had many positive comments from local residents about McAvoy and how they have kept local residents informed.”

Opening Quotes
Vicki Wells
Head of Children, Young People and Learning
Closing Quotes
Borough of Poole

"We have a building that matches The Aspiration Academy's vision and curriculum and that matches our needs. I'm very excited to be working in such a wonderful light and airy building that will meet the needs of the children."

Opening Quotes
Ellen Humphries
Closing Quotes
Ocean Academy


Construction Excellence Awards

  • Finalist for GB & ROI Construction Award

Have Any Questions?

To find out more about The McAvoy Group, of if you have any questions about our projects then contact us today for further information.