Putney school's £30m redevelopment starts with demolition of Love Actually gym

Demolition starts at the ARK

Demolition starts at the ARK

First published in News
Last updated
Wandsworth Guardian: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter

A school gym used in the nativity scene of Love Actually has been knocked down as part of a £30m redevelopment.

Wandsworth Guardian:

The film was released in 2003 

The ARK Putney Academy replaced the failing Elliot School in September 2012 and now major work has begun on the physical transformation of the site, starting with the gyms.

Wandsworth Guardian:

Four years ago the Elliot School was placed in special measures but a new head, Mark Phillips, was brought in who turned it around.

Ofsted reports ranked it as almost outstanding last year and now the school building is getting the same turnaround which is due to be completed by summer 2015.

The development of the new school is being funded by the sale of luxury flats and was the subject of a long and bitter campaign by residents and former pupils of Elliott School.

Wandsworth Guardian:

At the end of the redevelopment the school will have a new sports hall, an activity studio and three outdoor games areas. There will also be a new art space on the top floor as well as bigger corridors and classrooms.

Wandsworth Guardian: New Ark head teacher Alison Downey

Alison Downey, headteacher at ARK Putney, said: "We’re thrilled that this project is underway. A school environment plays such an important part in the way pupils learn - and, by the end of this project, our teaching and learning environment will be truly exceptional.

"Our school has been rated ‘good’ in every category by Ofsted, so this refurbishment is the next step in making ours an extraordinary school."

ARK Putney Academy students achieved record A-level results in 2013.

Comments (4)

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1:30pm Tue 27 May 14

janee says...

Perhaps this money could have been spent on developing the school while it was still in the hands of the local authority and perhaps that might have had a positive effect on its performance? Who will own the building? This is public funding being diverted into private hands.
Perhaps this money could have been spent on developing the school while it was still in the hands of the local authority and perhaps that might have had a positive effect on its performance? Who will own the building? This is public funding being diverted into private hands. janee
  • Score: 5

5:14pm Tue 27 May 14

alroutemaster says...

As an ex pupil in the early Sixties I remember Elliott being touted as the first multi ethnic comprehensive. I'm really surprised therefore that it lasted so long before being placed on special measures......
As an ex pupil in the early Sixties I remember Elliott being touted as the first multi ethnic comprehensive. I'm really surprised therefore that it lasted so long before being placed on special measures...... alroutemaster
  • Score: -5

9:53am Wed 28 May 14

EmmaWLDN says...

alroutemaster wrote:
As an ex pupil in the early Sixties I remember Elliott being touted as the first multi ethnic comprehensive. I'm really surprised therefore that it lasted so long before being placed on special measures......
I was about to make an assumption based on your comment. I think it best to ask you exactly what you meant by being surprised the school lasted so long? I wouldn't want to misconstrue your comment and it's intent.
[quote][p][bold]alroutemaster[/bold] wrote: As an ex pupil in the early Sixties I remember Elliott being touted as the first multi ethnic comprehensive. I'm really surprised therefore that it lasted so long before being placed on special measures......[/p][/quote]I was about to make an assumption based on your comment. I think it best to ask you exactly what you meant by being surprised the school lasted so long? I wouldn't want to misconstrue your comment and it's intent. EmmaWLDN
  • Score: 4

1:38pm Wed 28 May 14

frankiewankie says...

Its very sad that this was a secondary school I went to. Half the grounds sold off. But Elliott school had to be redone. There was holes in the walls and it was just old and shabby
BTW Love Actually was NOT filmed in the sports hall but the assembly hall which is being kept as it a listed building
Its very sad that this was a secondary school I went to. Half the grounds sold off. But Elliott school had to be redone. There was holes in the walls and it was just old and shabby BTW Love Actually was NOT filmed in the sports hall but the assembly hall which is being kept as it a listed building frankiewankie
  • Score: 3

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