Time capsule planted at Marshalls Park Academy’s new extension in Romford

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Construction of a £6.3 million extension to Marshalls Park Academy in Romford has been marked with the burying of a time capsule, under what will be the ground floor corridor in the new building.

Joined by representatives from the academy, the council, and the construction team, Havering Council’s cabinet member for education, children and families, Councillor Robert Benham, and contracts manager for Barnes Construction, Mark Whinney, helped head boy, Harry Harding and head girl, Lilly Hadrava, lower the capsule into position.

Barnes Construction started work in September last year on the two-storey extension, which will provide 16 new classrooms, a dance studio and changing facilities.

Designed by KLH Architects, with Superstructures assisting with the structural engineering design, the new accommodation is being built on land that housed the old staff car park. To-date, 133 piles have been installed, concrete ground beams and the floor to form the first floor have been poured, and the steel frame which forms the building structure has been erected.

The extension forms part of Havering’s schools expansion programme, which will see the Council investing more than £23 million into its schools this year in order to accommodate more children, and improve the facilities available.

Neil Frost, Headteacher, said: “At Marshalls Park we are incredibly excited about the investment in our school and more importantly our community; as such, we felt it would be fitting to mark this occasion by burying a time capsule for future generations to read about life in 2020.

“We have included various items that capture school routines, like timetables, life in modern Britain for young people such as airpods, and pressing global issues, for example, a simple bottle. Interestingly, this has led to much speculation about when would be the best time for the capsule to be “discovered”, and how our future generations will view contemporary Britain.”

Cllr Benham added: “The new state-of-the-art buildings will ensure that pupils at Marshalls Park have the most up-to-date equipment and facilities, which will help them to improve their knowledge and learning in a range of subjects.

“The development shows the council’s commitment to improving our schools to meet the demands of a growing community, due to regeneration and increased births, and ultimately be ready for future generations.”

Work now moves onto constructing the roof and completing the external masonry facades so that the building is made watertight, allowing the installation of the first phase of the mechanical and electrical services to start. The project is due to be completed in the summer.

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Mick Ferris

Editor Email: [email protected]