Katherine Warington School

This project is unique in not only the collaborative partnership formed between three secondary schools but also the approach to accommodating students as all schools were at full capacity.

Having experienced exceptional growth, the governors collectively decided that it was not feasible or desirable to continually expand. The result was a new unified secondary school for Harpenden.

Main contractor Kier was appointed to construct a two-storey sports hall and the two-storey school. EOS were appointed by installer Roskel Contracts to design and offsite manufacture a hybrid steel system for the new Katherine Warington School which encompassed load bearing and non load-bearing steel framing systems and steel floor cassettes.

Key Data

RHP Architects

Harpenden Secondary Education Trust

MLM Consulting Engineers

Main Contractor:

Installer/EOS Client:
Roskel Contracts

Steel Framing Systems Supplier:

Materials / Type of System:
Hot rolled structure, Stud & Track, load bearing and non load-bearing steel framing systems and steel floor cassettes.


The first phase was to complete the new sports hall with nine temporary classrooms, the second phase was the completion of the main school and the third and final phase – dismantling the temporary school and completing the sports hall. The first phase was critical so a fast-track offsite manufactured hybrid steel solution was conceived. Speed and predictability of programme was crucial to success as there was a rigid deadline to meet. The strategy was to take an extraordinary approach with offsite manufactured steel technology providing the solution.


EOS were appointed to design, engineer and offsite manufacture a hybrid steel framing system encompassing a primary hot rolled structure with a stud and track infill system for the main school, a load-bearing structure for the new sports hall with freestanding load-bearing frames to form the temporary classrooms with steel flooring cassettes which could be easily dismantled.


The new sports hall was constructed and then taking a ‘room within a room’ approach, the independent free-standing structures for the classrooms were designed and pre-engineered in the EOS factory. All components were cut to length, notched, dimpled in frame configurations but as the access was through a small fire door, all elements were supplied in flat pack form ready to assemble onsite. The compound elements of the frames, lattice lintels, double stud jambs and window lintels were supplied to site pre-assembled to meet the demanding timescales. All elements of the temporary school were designed specifically to be dismantled.

All components were rolled directly from the BIM model using Tekla software ensuring accuracy and quality and requiring no cutting or reworking onsite. Manufactured under strict quality management systems fully compliant with BS EN ISO 9001:2018 – eradicated onsite variability and ensures lifetime ‘in service’ performance and durability.


Using cutting edge systems, the EOS team delivered precision-engineered components which achieve highly robust and airtight structures with vastly enhanced building and thermal efficiency – reducing ongoing energy and maintenance costs for the lifetime of the building. No cutting or hot works were required onsite enhancing the productivity and improving on-site safety.

This project was achieved through a collaborative schools’ partnership and an innovative construction approach. The strategy for the temporary classrooms worked extremely well ensuring continuity of education. Close cooperation at the planning stage ensured a fit-for-purpose fast-track hybrid structural steel system was developed to attain the demanding timescales.

An outstanding and aesthetically appealing secondary school was delivered providing the students of Harpenden with a first-class education environment. Since opening in September 2019, the school’s ethos is to enable every student to make outstanding progress, whatever their starting point.