Winterstoke Hundred Academy opens £30.5M net zero school and confirms new Principal appointment

Winterstoke Hundred Academy opens £30.5M net zero school and confirms new Principal appointment

Weston’s Winterstoke Hundred Academy has marked the new year by throwing open the doors to North Somerset’s first net zero school – while also confirming the appointment of a new Principal.

Winterstoke Hundred first opened in Beaufighter Road in 2020, but work has been taking place over the past two years to build a 900-pupil second campus at Locking Parklands.

That work – carried out by contractor Kier, to specifications set out by North Somerset Council and the Cabot Learning Federation, which Winterstoke Hundred is part of – is now complete, with students moving into their new classrooms this week.

The three-storey building has been carefully designed to meet rigorous environmental standards – making it the first fully carbon neutral school in the area.

Solar panels covering the roof will generate electricity inside classrooms and send power to the national grid, providing green energy for the school, as well as the wider community.

The 80,000sqm building also boasts a much-sought BREEAM ‘excellent’ rating for energy efficiency and 10% biodiversity net gain, which will protect and promote plants and wildlife.


Heidi Clement, Cabot Learning Federation Head of Projects and Estates, said:

“The expansion of Winterstoke Hundred Academy is a major development and a huge financial investment that further enables our trust to meet the educational needs of young people and provide them with a fantastic environment to learn in.

“This project has been a four-year partnership between Keir, North Somerset Council and AtkinsRéalis, and I would like to thank them for their dedication and hard work throughout.

“The buildings and finish look amazing and will leave a lasting legacy for all those involved.”

Tony Searle, Executive Principal with the Cabot Learning Federation, said:

“We have worked tirelessly alongside our North Somerset Council partners to deliver an exceptional building on behalf of our community.

“With pupils now moving into the new buildings, we are excited about the educational opportunities that we will be able to afford our current cohort, and those who join the academy for decades to come.

“This investment in high-quality facilities and appointments reinforces our commitment to deliver the best possible education for our students.”

Councillor Catherine Gibbons, Deputy Leader of North Somerset Council and Executive Member for Children’s Services, Families and Life Long Learning, said:

“Winterstoke Hundred Academy’s new building is designed to achieve some of the highest standards of sustainability, raising the bar for what can be delivered in our region. The quality of construction is clear just from looking at the school and we’re immensely proud of what we have been able to accomplish alongside our partners at CLF and Kier.

“Funded through Homes England’s Housing Infrastructure Fund, the Winterstoke Hundred Academy expansion provides new school places and facilities, meeting the needs of growing local communities. We look forward to celebrating the completed school building alongside pupils at a grand opening event later in the term.”

However, the new term marked a fresh start in more ways that one for Winterstoke Hundred Academy, with a new Principal taking up the reins.

Matthew Randle (pictured above) has previously taught at large secondary schools in Leicestershire, Somerset and Bristol.

Most recently, he held the position of Vice Principal with CLF Post 16 in Bristol, where he built significant experience in safeguarding and leading the quality of education.

Executive Principal Tony Searle added:

“Matthew Randle has been appointed following a rigorous national recruitment process. He was the standout candidate from a strong field of internal and external applicants.

“He excelled throughout the process, and the decision to appoint him was unanimous after he impressed panels with his technical expertise, strong moral purpose and commitment to ensuring a strong educational experience for all within the Winterstoke Hundred community.”

Matthew Randle, new Principal at Winterstoke Hundred Academy, said:

“I’m very excited to be starting my role as Principal of Winterstoke Hundred Academy. I’ve been really looking forward to welcoming our students into the new building and starting to work with the local community.

“It’s an incredible building and we feel very lucky to be moving in to our second site. This is a significant investment in education in North Somerset which will enable us to build on our curriculum and really excel in many specialist areas as we work towards a full capacity in September. Our existing site on Beaufighter Road has only been in operation since 2016, so

all students from Year 7 to Year 13 will be able to experience excellent learning in state-of-the art facilities.

“We’re really looking forward to growing our links with the community over the next few years, and if people would like to come and see what we do at Winterstoke, and how we do it, they will be very welcome to visit our buildings and see the school in action.”