O’Dowd visits the site of £4.2million project at Belfast Royal Academy

Date published: 25 June 2015

Education Minister John O'Dowd today visited the site of a £4.2million improvement project at Belfast Royal Academy.

The project involves the construction of a new two-storey building to provide a music and HE block and new dining facilities.  There will also be a new extension to the rear of the Jackson building.

Speaking about the investment, the Minister said:

“This £4.2million investment will enable improvements to be carried out which will positively impact on pupils, teachers and school staff.  The improved and new accommodation at the school will provide better facilities for our young people to learn in and an improved working environment for all the school staff. 

 Ongoing investment in our schools estate is essential if we are to continue to provide a quality education.  The School Enhancement Programme is an important way of providing much needed work to our schools estate and I am confident that this investment will help in the drive to improve education standards.”  

The School Enhancement Programme (SEP) was announced in 2013 for projects costing between £500,000 and £4,000,000.  The programme is targeted to meet the immediate and pressing needs in schools, through smaller scale works, where a new build capital works are not deemed deliverable.

In conclusion, the Minister said:

“This is a good day for all the pupils and staff of the school and this level of investment also provides a significant boost for the local construction industry.  I am delighted to be here today to celebrate with them.”  

Principal Mr Moore Dickson said:

“The Governors and staff at Belfast Royal Academy are delighted that approval has been given to proceed with the SEP project, which will provide significantly enhanced facilities for pupils studying Music and Home Economics at the school, as well as providing a large multi-purpose area and Learning Support Unit. We are very grateful to the Department for grant funding assistance for this major project and look forward to the completion of the works.”

Notes to editors: 

  1. Belfast Royal Academy is a voluntary Grammar School in Belfast.
  2. The estimated cost of the overall scheme is £4.2million of which £2.57million is construction.
  3. The construction contract has been awarded to Felix O’Hare & Co.
  4. The Department of Education’s ‘Education Works’ campaign promotes the value of education. This year’s campaign aims to ensure that parents have information on schooling and that they are aware of the steps they can take to ‘Get Involved’ and support their teenager in achieving good outcomes at school. Watch out for the ads on television, radio and outdoor locations. The campaign highlights the vital role families can play in helping children do well at school and improve their life chances. Visit nidirect for more information or watch the TV ad on the Department’s YouTube channel
  5. See photos from the Department of Education in our Flickr collection
  6. Media enquiries to the Department of Education Press Office Tel: 028 9127 9207. Out of office hours, contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 076 99 715 440, and your call will be returned.

Share this page

Back to top