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Award-winning academy with strong environmental credentials

Great Western Academy, Swindon
Great Western Academy hero

Setting the environmental strategy and designing cutting-edge facilities for secondary and post-16 education at the 1,200 place, £21m Great Western Academy.


BAM Construction



Service Lines

Opened in September 2018, the £21m Great Western Academy (GWA), commissioned by the Education Skills and Funding Agency (ESFA), is a three-storey building designed to deliver a full secondary and post-16 curriculum.

Academically, the focus is on science, technology, maths and the creative arts, while the facilities also include a four-court sports hall, three outdoor football pitches and an artificial cricket pitch.

Acting for BAM Construction, our team delivered a full range of building services design from our M&E team, and the civil and structural engineering design.

Key aspects of our design included:

  • An environmental strategy that delivers full compliance with the ESFA Facilities Output Specification in terms of daylight, thermal comfort, air quality and energy performance
  • An approach to ventilation that ensures rooms can be repurposed in the future and still comply with regulations for thermal comfort and indoor air quality
  • The use of PV and heat pumps to achieve the energy efficiency requirements of Part L, Local Planning Policy and BREEAM
  • An external lighting scheme to cover a c10,000m² area of parking, drop off areas, access routes, pedestrian areas and inner courtyard
  • Design of a dedicated substation and a power distribution infrastructure that is future-proofed to support the growth of the school.

Situated in the Tadpole Garden Village in Swindon, GWA welcomed its first pupils in September 2018 and has grown to accommodate 1,200 students.

In July 2019, GWA won Best Educational Building at the West of England Local Authority Building Control awards.

Images courtesy of John Seaman Photography

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