Pathfield School SEN Facility

Project name: Pathfield School

Sector: Education

Location: Barnstaple, England

Client name: Mercury Construction – Devon County Council

Supplied by: Wernick Buildings

Accommodation type: Single storey Rapidplan

Size: 7 modules

Features: SEN facility – Hygiene room with hoist, Venesta cubicles, wash troughs, and interactive screens


As Pathfield School in Barnstaple reached maximum pupil capacity, they required a new SEN-friendly facility to accommodate the increase in demand. The new building needed to be a flexible space that would be able to cater to the needs of the pupils, aged between four and five, who have extra sensory and behavioural challenges.

As the demand became more urgent, it was imperative that the new building be delivered in a short timeframe to reduce the pressure on the school. In addition, it was important that the new facility create a calm, engaging and safe environment that supports and encourages pupil development.


Wernick Buildings was chosen for the project due to their high-quality buildings, cost effectiveness and ability to meet the timeframe. Wernick worked with Mercury Construction to provide the new SEN school and successfully delivered the building on-site within 12 weeks.

The Wernick team faced a number of logistical issues as the school continued to operate during the installation process. As a result, the craning of the modules was completed on the weekend to minimise disruption.

The new facility includes two classrooms, a hygiene room, and a shared area where pupils can meet to have their lunch and develop their social skills. The shared area also provides additional space to host a variety of activities for the pupils including art lessons.

Designed with large, spacious areas and plenty of windows to allow a copious amount of natural light into the building, the school provides a calming environment for the pupils who may display behavioural issues. In addition, easily accessible toilets that can be accessed straight from the classrooms are also a useful feature for the young pupils. Each classroom is equipped with doors which lead directly onto the dedicated play area, allowing pupils to have direct access to outside play.

Additional features and equipment include a hygiene room with a hoist to allow wheelchair access and enables staff to carry out any personal care. Hygiene facilities also include Venesta toilet cubicles with wash troughs, meanwhile interactive screens are installed in each classroom. A kitchen area including a cooker with an extraction hood was also added to the building. Externally, the building is finished with Siberian Larch cladding to give the facility a more contemporary appearance.

Client Comment

Avril Burrows, Premises Manager at Pathfield School, commented: “It’s an amazing building, I am so impressed with it. Having extra space for the pupils makes a huge difference. Wernick were very responsive and helpful, it felt like nothing was too much trouble. The team talked us through everything and were very understanding about the children wanting to look through the Herras fencing to watch what they were up to.

I just want to say thank you to the Wernick team, the whole experience has been really good, and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Wernick to anyone.”

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