WORK on a £30m state-of-the-art school building to house the students of Strangford Integrated College is due to get underway next year.

This week the start of the project moved a step closer with the appointment of a main contractor for the integrated college complex.

Building contractor Felix O’Hare & Co has been appointed by the Department of Education to construct the new building at the Carrowdore-based school. Construction is due to be completed in 2026.

The new school is to have excellent sporting facilities as well as bright modern classrooms and facilities for all subjects including science, technology, art and design, drama and modern languages, enhancing the integrated education of students for years to come.

Clare Foster, principal of Strangford Integrated College said the appointment of the contractor is a significant milestone for the school community. 

“The contractors have been on site, and staff and students are excited to see the new building begin,” she said.

“Since we opened our doors in 1997, Strangford Integrated College has continued to grow in numbers and reputation, and it is time for this new building on our existing site.

“This will enable us to provide students with access to high quality integrated education in a modern, state-of-the-art, energy-efficient building in which our young people will continue to thrive and flourish.

“Our students deserve the best start in life, and we are looking forward to the opportunities that the enhanced school facilities and top-class sporting facilities will offer to both students and staff. 

“A great deal of work has gone into getting to this new build project thus far and I would like to thank the Department of Education, project consultants Aecom and the Board of Governors for their support in making this happen.”

The new school will be built adjacent to the current buildings, so students will see the construction of their school in real time. 

Mrs Foster continued:  “We will be engaging with our students and the local community throughout the project so they can witness first-hand the design and build process of the school which will allow opportunities for enrichment and learning. It is an exciting time to be part of Strangford Integrated College.” 

Felix O’Hare & Co has successfully delivered many iconic projects over the years.

Stephen Morrissey, contracts manager, said: “Our team is looking forward to the opportunity of creating this exciting educational facility in collaboration with Strangford Integrated College, working with the local community and leaving a lasting legacy for the families of the North Down, Ards and Peninsula area.”