Pencoedtre High School’s Student Ambassadors mark the topping out of their new £34.7m school


Student Ambassadors on the roof of the newly topped out Pencoedtre High School

Back Row Left to Right: Jamie Preece (Year 8), Chloe Tudor (Year 8), Ashleigh Watkins (Year 10), Ellie Clark (Year 9), Jess Bernardo (Year 10), Alfie Davies (Year 9), Zach Dyer (Year 9).
Front Row Left to Right: Owen Stacey (Bouygues UK), Lis Burnett (VoG Counci), Cory Dylan Carr (Year 10), Chris Brown (Pencoedtre High School), Purnima Kumar (Year 9), Paula Ham (VoG Council), Jason Carter (Bouygues UK), Mike Baynham (Bouygues UK).


The finishing of the outer part of the new Pencoedtre High School in Barry, traditionally called the topping out, was marked by the signing of the main beam by some of the school’s Student Ambassadors.


Despite restrictions introduced since the Covid pandemic, Student Ambassadors at Pencoedtre have played a pivotal role in linking the school, students, and local community to the construction team building their new school.


Bouygues UK, the contractor building the state-of-the-art school, has been on site since spring last year and has made great progress on the three-storey school building.


During this time students have had exclusive access to the site, learning about the different stages of the build and the skills that go into constructing such a big project, enabling them to discover more about the construction industry. All visits were carried out in a Covid safe way, in accordance with Welsh Government and HSE guidelines.


That is why Student Ambassadors were invited along to see this pivotal and celebratory stage of the build, and mark their involvement as Ambassadors by signing one of the building’s main beams, as well as getting the best view in the house from the roof of their new school.


Year 9 Student Ambassador, Ellie Clark, said: “It is fascinating to see how sustainable the new school is going to be with the solar panels on the roof. It is great to see that this is where I am going to sit my GCSEs and go on to sixth form.”


Purnima Kumar, also from year 9 at the school said of the new building: “Everything here is going to be so much better than our old school. It makes me really excited to move in and start working.”


The build is part of the Vale of Glamorgan Council and Welsh Government’s 21st century school’s investment programme, which is also delivering a new building for Whitmore High School and expansion for Ysgol Gymraeg Bro Morgannwg in Barry too.


The Pencoedtre site also includes a four-court sports hall, all-weather hockey floodlit pitch and grass rugby and football pitches, as well as extra performance spaces for theatre and dance.


Mike Baynham, Operations Director of Bouygues UK in Wales, said: “It was wonderful to be able to invite the Student Ambassadors around the building today. To see their enthusiasm for the school and their excitement about the new resources they will be able to use when completed was great.


“Despite the restrictions, they have been really important in getting the message about the build and what the project team is doing on site to the rest of the student body, and we can’t wait to invite them back soon when more of the internal fixtures are finished so they can see the whole building come to life.”


You can watch the Pencoedtre High School topping out film, here: