Ernesford Grange Community Academy has received a substantial donation from Midlands-based construction and development firm the Deeley Group, which is headquartered in Coventry.
This has enabled the school to purchase kits for their Year 10 football team, holders of the prestigious West Midlands County U15 trophy.
Gary Heavey, PE teacher at Ernesford Grange Community Academy, said: “We’re incredibly grateful for the sponsorship – the students are loving pulling on their own strip that is personal to them and reflects the values and traditions of the Academy. The days of using their regular PE kits are no more!
“The kits will soon be in action for another major schools final, as we plan to lend them to our equally talented year nines, who are in a Coventry final in the coming weeks.
“It’s really important for us to receive sponsorship to support the school’s sports budget, thereby allowing us to support our talented footballers – which may not have been possible without the boost from Deeley Group.”
The sponsorship follows on from the major £5 million extension project undertaken by Deeley Construction at Ernesford Grange Community Academy, which is expected to be completed by September 2022 and funded by Coventry City Council.
It will create new teaching space and classrooms, with the work resulting in around 180 new places for potential students. The new, three storey building will be ready for students to use by the next academic year.
The expansion is phase two of a project which has already seen Deeley Construction build a state-of-the-art extension for the adjoining Riverbank Academy, a fellow Sidney Stringer Multi Academy Trust and designated SEN school.
Eleanor Deeley, joint managing director of Deeley Group, said: “We’re delighted to be able to support a local school in this way, and would like to pass on our congratulations to both the year nines and tens at Ernesford Grange Community Academy for the great success they’ve had this season.
“Supporting the local community is an important part of our strategy, and we’re pleased to continue our partnership with the community academy, with the extension project we embarked on together just last year now well underway.
“We look forward to seeing the new kits in action in the near future.”
PICTURE CAPTION: Ernesford Grange Year 10s, West Midlands County U15 champions, pose in their new kit
In our latest blog he discusses how the tendering/bidding process has changed over the years and how driving PR and marketing supports the businesses’ wider strategy.
We are a family business at the Deeley Group, with a good ethos and a fantastic profile as a regional developer in the Midlands. The business ticks all the boxes for me and it’s a place I have loved working since 2013.
My role as a business development manager is one with many hats and that makes it all the more exciting. It’s a varied role that puts me in touch with a lot of great people, both inside and outside the business.
It’s vital in this role that you have a full understanding of all aspects of the company and that you become somewhat of a thread through the business. That supports me to deliver on the wider business strategy and ensure the right people are put in touch with the right parts of the Group.
While the day job is all about working closely with our estimators, planner and design & build team, working with the site teams and covering PR/marketing is equally important.
I enjoy searching for that next business opportunity and in tough economic times we don’t just chase any work – we target the work that is right for Deeley Construction.
That includes resource management and making sure we are in a position to deliver a piece of work to the standard that is expected of the Deeley name. It’s a constant balance, particularly in times like these.
The role I hold in the tendering process includes reviewing clients’ early budgets pre-tender. Clients and their quantity surveyors are in a difficult position, because prices given six months ago are increasingly difficult to keep to.
Bid writing and the tendering process has changed significantly in the last decade. When I first joined the firm, I would say that eight out of 10 tenders were focussed 100 per cent around price, but as we have started to do more public funded projects, we are looking at a split closer to 60 per cent price and 40 per cent quality.
Quality is subjective of course, but the price isn’t always king for the client now and social value also comes into the equation.
Engaging local schools and colleges is key to bidding too and in some public sector jobs up to 20 per cent of a tender score can go towards social value.
When working on a tender now, for healthcare in particular, we write an employment and skills plan – and that is becoming all the more common.
But we are able to continue to deliver social value and that’s something I’m proud of. For example, as a regional contractor, 80 per cent of the supply chain is within 30 miles of sites we work – and that figure is even higher in Coventry and Warwickshire.
Deeley Group has always had a good standing when it comes to social value and it is something that continues to grow. We have a commitment to trainees with 12% of our workforce are trainees or in further education, a community spend of £192,000 since 2016 and have put more than 900 hours into local community causes.
As a business we have always been very community driven and in terms of PR our main goal is to keep local communities informed of our work. We have garnered a strategic approach to PR and it works hand-in-hand with our business strategy – linking perfectly into my day-to-day business development role.
We do a lot of business-to-business marketing and PR alongside the community promotion. I remember before joining Deeley I noticed in the media the amazing stuff the firm had been doing, and that reputation is something we are always looking to uphold.
I’m lucky to be with a company that has built an incredible positive reputation based on a track record of over 85 years.
As inflation continues to bite, organisers of the Starley Sportive want people living or working in the city and its surrounding areas to start saving commuting and travel costs by cycling in preparation to taking part in this year’s event and familiarising themselves with the Starley Network, a newly created 500-mile regional cycling network.
The Starley Sportive, established by Coventry Road Club, Deeley Group and Coventry City Council, will take place on Sunday, September 4 with participants setting off from Deeley Group’s head office on Herald Avenue at 8:30am.
Riders will cycle through locations across Coventry and Warwickshire, with parts of the Cotswolds also featuring in the route.
All money raised will be donated to The Myton Hospices, Zoë’s Place Baby Hospice and University Hospitals Coventry & Warwickshire Charity.
Ahead of the event itself, organisers will be undertaking a foodbank drive where all scheduled riders will be given the option to donate food to a local foodbank – with the aim of supporting those in need within our community during this ongoing period of economic uncertainty.
Eleanor Deeley, joint managing director of the Deeley Group, said: “As a community-focused business, we’re well aware of the challenges that everyone in the region is facing with the riding cost of living.
“Cycling to and from work is a great way to get regular exercise and is known to contribute to improved mental wellbeing, so we’d like to encourage people across Coventry and Warwickshire to don their helmets and start and end their working day in a positive, healthy manner.”
“The Starley Sportive offers a great way to initially explore the wonderful network of cycle paths and cyclist-friendly roads that were set up by Mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street and Coventry City Council back in 2020.”
Ian Court, general secretary of Coventry Road Club, added: “Coventrians are fortunate to now have a designated cycle network available to them to explore, navigate and conquer, and preparing for the Starley Sportive is a great way to get into the swing of things.
“A new motor-free cycleway in Coundon is nearing completion, with Binley also set for a new cycling zone. Whether it’s work or leisure, rain or shine, it’s a really great time to be out on your bike in the city – all while saving money and doing your bit for the environment!”
The sportive and the cycling network are named in honour of James Starley, known as the father of the bicycle industry and John Kemp Starley, widely considered the inventor of the modern bicycle. Both worked and lived in Coventry.
To book a spot and find out more about the 2022 Starley Sportive, visit www.starleysportive.co.uk/.
This will be the final phase of the regeneration of the old Sydenham Industrial Estate, following Deeley Homes’ £29 million conversion of the former Soans’ motor dealership site into an initial 147 homes in 2018.
The 11,901 sq ft development, which will be accessed by Ramsey Road, will be a mix of one bedroom and two-bedroom for social rent and shared ownership with two- and three-bedroom market sale homes.
40% of the properties at the site will be affordable homes, with work set to begin in late summer and completion expected to be in early 2023.
The developers will be making contributions to improve sustainable travel measures, local green spaces and sports centre improvements in the local area.
Eleanor Deeley, Joint Managing Director of Deeley Group, said: “With the lack of supply a real concern for prospective homeowners across the country, we’re delighted to bring another round of homes to the market, including six affordable properties.”
“With people’s finances stretched to the limit due to a combination of factors, affordable housing is incredibly important – for first-time buyers, small families and those looking to downsize alike. As such, we’re pleased to once again be bringing new homes to Leamington.”
“It was important to us to reaffirm the commitment we first made to the local area in 2018 as part of our regeneration of the old Sydenham Industrial Estate, and we will be making improvements to key local infrastructure once again, as the fifteen new homes are brought to fruition.
“This sought-after location has excellent travel links to nearby towns and cities, as well as a range of desirable amenities and schooling options. We’re really looking forward to getting the build started and then showcasing the homes to interested parties upon completion.”
Deeley Construction has been named Midlands Member of the Year by The Building Safety Group, the UK’s largest construction safety group.
The award was given to the firm, which has been operating in the Midlands region for over 85 years, at the 2022 BSG Health and Safety Awards at the Avoncroft Museum of Historic Buildings in Bromsgrove.
Keith Galletly, Health and Safety Manager at Deeley Construction, said: “We are delighted to be recognised as the BSG Member of the Year.
“As a business that has been in operation for nine decades, it is of the utmost importance that we continue to remain responsible, putting in the work day in, day out to ensure the highest health and safety standards are set across the business, from our offices in the heart of Coventry to our developments and projects all over the region.
“I would like to congratulate every member of the Deeley team who has worked diligently to contribute to this renowned health and safety award achievement.”
BSG Managing Director, Stephen Bell said: “The BSG Awards ceremony was once again a national celebration of our members’ dedicated commitment to health and safety in construction.
“Recognised award winners such as Deeley Construction should be immensely proud of their achievements and highly commended for their admirable approach to reducing risk in the workplace.
“It is BSG Members like Deeley who make a significant contribution to raising the bar when it comes to health and safety standards across the sector, and we offer them our congratulations.”
The full list of winners, highly commended and shortlisted companies can be viewed here.
While the three-storey, £5 million extension project funded by Coventry City Council continues for the Ernesford Grange secondary school – a stone’s throw away, there is a huge biodiversity project underway.
Coventry City Council understands the importance of enhancing the environment and included it in the planning requirements for the development. This led to Deeley working with Leamington-based Arbscape Tree Surgeons to create a safe haven for wildlife.
Colin Sheasby, of Arbscape Tree Surgeons, speaks about the biodiversity works in our latest blog.
This is the first time we have worked with the Deeley Group on a project and we were brought together by Coventry City Council.
As part of the original planning process, it was required for there to be an ecological survey of the site. Swift Ecology prepared the report and recommended work which could be completed to enhance the biodiversity of the site.
First of all, the report found that the main school site wasn’t large enough to provide the necessary space to create a habitat. As a result, we have been working not only on the main school site, but also the playing field, which is part of the school boundary, and land adjacent to that field.
We have been on site now since January and we’re making significant progress. One of the key tasks we have been working on is the creation of a 300 sqm ‘tiny forest’.
To create the forest, we have been planting a range of native species in a very small space, then leaving it to the environment to let it develop.
It has been lovely to be able to invite students from the school to help us in the planting of the forest – and the idea is that in the future it will be a great educational resource for pupils.
We have used the Miyawaki methodology to create the forest, which centres around planting two to four trees per square metre, and then the forest will be self-sustaining.
On the main school site, we have planted 21 new scattered trees and four trees to enhance an existing hedgerow, with a further seven new trees planted on the additional field. The focus of this biodiversity project was to ensure the species chosen are native or wildlife friendly – meaning they can provide pollen, fruit or seeds for wildlife which inhabit and occupy the area.
Existing trees in the area have had bird and bat boxes added to them to encourage more wildlife while we are also creating an invertebrate hotel and log pile to foster habitats for invertebrates, amphibians, and small mammals.
This is an exciting addition and will be a significant educational resource for both Riverbank Academy and Ernesford Grange Community Academy on the site.
We’re also working to create in total 7,000 sqm of wildflower meadow across the main school site and additional field. The main school site has had 2,200 sqm of wildflower meadow sown, including Yellow Rattle and Cornfield Annuals seed mix.
We are also scrub planting, adding new hedges and planting blossom trees.
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The work will significantly enhance the site and the biodiverse wildlife corridor that links it to existing natural habitats.
However, one important part of any biodiversity programme of works is to also rid the existing environment of any threats to its long-term health.
That has seen control measures introduced on invasive, non-native species. We’re working to rid the area of Himalayan Cotoneaster and control the Himalayan Balsam, and the measures will hopefully stop the species spreading further and on to the school site.
We’ll be finishing our works along the river by August and then the plan is to monitor and manage the area for the next three years.
We’re very optimistic that the ecological impact and impact for wildlife in the area will be huge, and it is hoped all the different features will become a habitat for everything from bats and badgers to invertebrates and birds to forage and nest.
Jack McQuillan has been working for Deeley Construction for two years, starting with the firm at the age of 16.
In recent months Jack has completed work on his first scheme at Tiverton Road, a scheme of 39 affordable homes for Stonewater.
In our latest blog, he reflects on his development during the project and his first two years as a trainee site manager.
I can trace my time back with Deeley Construction to a brief work experience placement I did in school. Undertaking that work placement was one of the best decisions I have made.
While my family have always been involved and worked in construction, it wasn’t until I completed my placement at Deeley that I realised the variety of roles involved in a construction, development or property business.
From that week of experience, I worked with near enough every department in the firm. This included spending days on site, understanding the financial processes with the accounts team and getting a chance to speak with the management team too.
I felt after that placement I had a really good understanding of the company, so when the opportunity arose to join the business as a management trainee I jumped at the chance.
The management trainee role saw me given more chance to experience parts of the business, alongside my fellow trainee Tom Jeffrey. The office work was insightful, but for me it was the work on-site which appealed the most.
That led me to supporting Eamonn Gorman, site manager, on the Tiverton Road development for site manager. I had very limited experience of being on a construction site at this time, so to be supporting a multi-million-pound development at the age of 17 was a great chance to learn.
That’s where Deeley has really helped me to develop at such a quick pace. Over the course of the 18 months on-site at Tiverton Road, I improved in all aspects of work. I was given key tasks critical to the delivery of the project and it was my responsibility to ensure I had full knowledge of the job.
Like every job, there were hurdles to overcome and challenges to work through. The site team had to work hard and adapt, and it was interesting for me to see how important adaptability can be on site.
One of the big takeaways for me from that first project was the development of my people skills. You meet lots of different people in this business, people from different walks of life – and the way you deal with, for example, clients and the team on site is completely different.
I’ve now moved onto the Ernesford Grange & Riverbank Academy project, which is a completely different job. It’s a live-site with the school still open and we’re working with traditional steel frame rather than offsite manufactured timber frame houses.
However, the principles are still the same – it all comes down to communications and understanding how to work with and speak to different people.
Away from site, Deeley is giving myself and Tom plenty of opportunity to develop and gain important qualifications too.
We are studying at Rugby College and started out on a Level 3 course. Because of what we had been learning on the job and the experience we had, the tutors pushed us an academic year ahead.
Ahead of assessments, I’ve been able to compare my site management experience with Tom’s as a quantity surveyor. We’re now completing a HNC in Construction and the Built Environment and also studying for the HND.
To make sure we are getting the best results we can in our assessments, time management is crucial. It’s all about finding that balance, but it’s something I’ve took to and that time management skill is useful back on-site too.
I think I’m continuing to improve and develop on site, I’m still only 18 and it’s not common for people my age to be carrying out some of the roles I do.
We are a real family here at Deeley, you can see how far some of the trainees in the firm have gone and I’m hoping to go as high as I can.
For young people in schools and colleges, construction definitely needs to be better promoted as an industry to pursue a career in.
I was lucky that my career advisor pointed me in the direction of Deeley, due to the school’s links with the business.
If we can encourage more young people to come into construction that can only be a good thing for the industry. I’m only in the formative years of my career, but these first two years have been brilliant and I’m looking forward to continuing my development with the business.
Exemplar Health Care is one of the UK’s leading providers of specialist nursing care that focuses on maximising independence and empowering those living with complex needs to live as fulfilled lives as possible. Its new home, Shire Oaks Court, located on Brownhills Road in Walsall, will be its third in the West Midlands area, and is due to open early 2023 – creating 100 jobs for the local area.
Exemplar Health Care has worked closely with health and social care authorities in the area and hopes to bring this one-of-a-kind facility to Walsall to enable local people who are living with complex needs, or, have suffered an accident to receive the specialist care that they need close to their homes and loved ones.
The home will be equipped top-to-bottom to meet the needs of its new residents. Each of the 30 bedrooms will come with an en-suite wet room, and the building will feature high quality, spacious communal spaces, sensory and therapy rooms and landscaped gardens, for residents and visitors to enjoy.
Charlotte Lloyd, Director of Commissioning at Exemplar Health Care, said: “We’re pleased to announce we are investing in a 30-bed specialist care home for the Walsall area.
“This community-based home will provide person-centered care and rehabilitation that focuses on maximising independence, building everyday living skills, and empowering people to live as fulfilled lives as possible.
“It is extremely rewarding to be able to support 30 local people with complex health needs and to provide over 100 stable and local jobs. As well as providing employment opportunities, there are plans in place to help the new care home become part of the local community. It’s our ambition for the home to be a place where we host events, and where our residents can be part of the community, whether through work placements, local events or volunteering.”
Midlands-based Deeley Construction has been appointed to develop the building located on Brownhill Road.
Martin Gallagher, Managing Director of Deeley Construction, said: “It’s fantastic to see our team on site and starting work to create a care home which will be an important asset for the local community.
“This is our first development with Exemplar Health Care and it sees the continued delivery of our healthcare development expertise across the Midlands.
“We have a strong track record of creating facilities that cater for adults with complex needs and we look forward to working in partnership with Exemplar Health Care on this development in Walsall.”
Shire Oaks Court will be situated on Brownhill Road, Walsall.