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News

New Building Projects Prioritise Safety

By | November 30, 2015

In 2010, we became aware that some of our buildings required strengthening in order to meet new seismic standards. As the safety of our students, staff and visitors is paramount to Woodford House, the School is committed to strengthening various buildings. During the past four years, earthquake strengthening has been undertaken on Morea, Nelson Richards, the Technology Block, Science Block and the Chapel.  While the need for this work is unquestioned, and our commitment is absolute, the financial cost to our School has been considerable. I would like to thank you for your ongoing earthquake strengthening contributions, which continue to be vital in creating a safe environment at Woodford.


Current and imminent building projects are:

  • Earthquake strengthening of Woodford, including the rebuild of the SouthWest end
  • Demolition of Haddington Music Block and the laundry, which will be replaced with a teaching and learning space for performing arts
  • Renovations to Nelson Richards

Woodford – Dining, Kitchen and Hall

Strengthening work continues in parts of Woodford. The work is taking place between Monday-Friday, 7am and 5pm. The most significant project will be the demolition of the SouthWest end of Woodford, and the goal is to have the demolition completed before school commences in 2016 to minimise disruption.

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Woodford – proposed 2016 rebuild

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Woodford – overall structural 3d view

In January 2016, reconstruction will begin on Woodford. We are also using this as an opportunity to give the SouthWest end a fresh new look inside, while maintaining its 1900s exterior. This will incorporate a new purpose-built kitchen, an extended dining room and outdoor deck for Year 13 students, and a Founder’s Room, which will seat approximately 40 – 50 people. This will be a multi-purpose room for staff, parents and students to use. Please see attached document to view the proposed rebuild.

During this time, staff and students will be relocated to ensure minimal disruption while the rebuild is taking place. The kitchen will be relocated into the dining room, the dining room will be moved into the hall, and assemblies will be in the Chapel and possibly the old gym. The laundry will be relocated to the Holland basement for 2016, then to the newly built part of Woodford in January 2017.


Haddington – Music Block

Haddington, which was constructed in 1935, is in need of earthquake strengthening. More importantly, and as a former boarding house, it is inadequate for the required functions of performing arts, which is experiencing curriculum expansion as well as increased student participation. Therefore, Haddington will be completely demolished and a new performing arts teaching and learning space will be built. The demolition and rebuild is a 9-month project, starting in December 2015.

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Haddington – Proposed north-west elevation and main level layout

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Haddington – Proposed south-east elevation and lower level layout


Nelson Richards

In addition to earthquake strengthening, parts of Nelson/Richards will be renovated in December 2015 and January 2016. Renovations will include upgrading the hallways and bedrooms and adding an open plan area for the girls to socialise and build, or maintain, friendships.