Addington Valley Academy, Croydon.



Project Details

Kier Construction, London
Autumn 2020 - Spring 2021
SFS supplied by Metsec; Y-wall sheathing board supplied by RCM; Vitrafix system and Ceramapanel cladding supplied by Valcan
Addington Valley Academy, Croydon2024-05-28T11:37:58+00:00

Project Description

New co-educational SEN school facilities enhance local area

Based in Croydon, Addington Valley Academy is a new Special Free School for children and young people with autism and learning difficulties.

With 150 places for children and young people aged between 2 – 19 years old, Addington Valley Academy is an inclusive and ambitious school offering outstanding facilities to children with special educational needs.

Designed by Noviun Architects, the project at Addington Valley Academy involved the demolition of the old community centre that had previously stood on the site, re-landscaping the area, and the construction of a new, steel-framed school building.

Having worked with Kier Construction on many projects previously, we pre-qualified for the project at Addington Valley through the Kier supply chain process and were awarded the contract based on our technical review and previous experience.

Commenting on our appointment, Ed Dwight, Project Manager at Kier Construction says: “As well as being able to demonstrate the relevant expertise, Eden Facades had previously worked with one of our surveyors, who recommended the team for their experience in the installation of SFS.”

Work began in Autumn 2020, with the project due for completion in September 2021, in time to open for the new school year. One of the advantages of using an SFS system is that it is quicker to install than brick and block work, and can reduce the overall build schedule, allowing other trades to have access to site sooner than when using more traditional methods.

At Addington Valley Academy, the SFS system was supplied by Metsec and installed by our team over the winter months. As 2021 began, the envelope for the new building commenced, using Y-wall sheathing board supplied by RCM, followed by the Vitrafix carrier system and Ceramapanel cladding panels from Valcan.

Working through the winter and dealing with cold and wet weather can often pose a challenge for projects, and in this case the work we needed to do on the roof of the school was impacted, as Paul Michaelson, Eden Facades Construction Director explains: “After we finished the Y-wall, and before our cladding works started, the windows needed to go in, but the cold and damp conditions meant they couldn’t be fixed in place until the weather improved. As soon as we were able to start work again our teams worked hard to make up the time.”

Ed adds: “Paul’s involvement and leadership was very much appreciated; he always came to site with answers to questions rather than problems, and the attitude of the supervisors was good.”

The Vitrafix system used at the Academy provides a solution for panels to be installed, and in this case face fixed installation was specified, with the fixing and rivets colour matched to the Ceramapanel boards. Made from fibre cement, Ceramapanel cladding panels are cost effective, and their strength and durability ensure that future maintenance is kept to a minimum. The panels are available in through coloured or painted finish, and for this project the three colours chosen by the architect were Charcoal, Hearth Brick and Cappuccino, in Natural Textures Raw finish.

Gavin Besley, General Manager at Valcan, comments: “Fibre cement facades such as Ceramapanel A1 are ideally suited to projects like the one at Addington Valley Academy, where a natural façade is needed. Panels can be supplied pre-squared and finished off-site for efficient installation, and their resistance to environmental impact means they are highly durable with little maintenance required. When installed using the correct carrier system such as Vitrafix, the result is a robustly tested, non-combustible system with full warranty.

We have worked with Paul and the team at Eden Facades for many years and appreciate their commitment to their suppliers and the strong work ethic that we share. The finished project at Addington Valley Academy looks fantastic and we look forward to collaborating with the team at Eden again very soon.”

The project was completed on schedule and the Academy open to students in time for the beginning of the new school year, with both Kier and the client pleased with the result. Commenting on working with us, Ed concludes: “The communication we received from Eden Facades was consistently good, and they kept us abreast of developments on the project. We would have no hesitation in working with them again on future projects.”

Update: we’re delighted to say that our work on this project resulted in an award. Eden Facades were a winner at the prestigious 2022 Façade Awards UK:

  • Best use of fibre cement cladding panels, winner: Addington Valley Academy – Eden Facades with Valcan

To find out more about this project, or to discuss a future project with us, contact us on 01268 744199, or email


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