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Principal Dave Smith

On Monday 1st of June the New Bennerley Building was open to students for the first time. Thanks to the efforts of Mrs Ashby (Business Manager), the site team, the IT team, cleaners and all other staff it was business as usual from the off.

The £7.49 million building project caused excited enthusiasm from the students who were desperate to get in to their new environment. English, Maths and Science have all transferred to the new build and have got off to a flying start. All three subjects were in the midst of preparing students for examinations in GCSE, AS and A levels but because they had invested time during half term students missed nothing.

Students and staff alike have been impressed with the quiet corridors, spacious classrooms and the 21st century facilities offered by Balfour Beatty’s build team. Delivered on time and to budget, it has demonstrated the effective partnership they have shown with the academy throughout the project. They have harnessed the inclusive ethos of the Ormiston Trust to give Ilkeston a new academy building fit for its young people. We hope this will stand the test of time to stand side by side with the King George building following the centenary last year.

To coincide with the opening we are having a concerted push on standards in the academy with a focus on uniform, equipment and presentation of work. With more work planned for the Summer term and into the holiday, we are desperate to finish the year well to prepare for the new academic year.

In addition to classrooms, the new Bennerley Building houses the Main Reception, the Learning Resource Centre, The Hub, Student Reception and essential office space. It also houses the Barry Bainbridge conference room named after the former Chair of Governors of both Ormiston Enterprise and Ormiston Ilkeston Academies. Unfortunately, Barry passed away late in 2013 after he had invested huge efforts in both academies when they were in special measures. His stewardship helped kick start the improvement we hope to continue with this new build.