Case Study: Heating System Refurbishment – West Lakes Academy

Case Study: Academy Trust Heating Refurbishment

Client: West Lakes Academy Trust

Sector: Education

Budget: £371,000

Completed: June 2023

Services Used

Refurbishing a school’s energy room with a modern and efficient system.


West Lakes Academy in Egremont, Cumbria, educates children from 11 to 18 years old. The school was founded in 2008 and moved into a new building in 2012.
The school required a more energy-efficient heating system.

The existing heating system included a redundant biomass boiler and hopper store; as part of the new installation, these were removed along with a number of redundant Reznor units.

Project Scope:

The project was scheduled in two phases.

Phase one of the scheme

The school’s climbing wall area required the supply and installation of gas-fired air-handling units, including all associated ductwork. New gas pipework was also installed along with associated BMS works.

Phase two of the scheme

The second part of the scheme required the removal of a redundant biomass boiler hopper and store, replacing it with a new energy-efficient gas-fired boiler and pump, plus modifications to the BMS controls.

Project Challenges:

The project required extensive value engineering to meet the client’s budget. We worked with the client to do this whilst ensuring quality was not compromised.  The project also had to be completed during term time when the school was active with staff and pupils; this was successfully achieved with careful planning and safety measures.


West Lakes Academy Heating refurbishment contractors
West Lakes Academy Heating refurbishment contractors

Scope of works:

Energy Centre:

Removal of large biomass boiler, hopper, auger and associated controls.

Installation of Ideal Imax EL 500kw boiler and the required controls upgrade.


Climbing Wall:

Removal of warm air Reznor units and the installation of two packaged gas-fired air handling units.

Health & Safety:

At the Meel Group we take health and safety very seriously, all RAMs were in place, and we had no incidents during the project.

The installation of the AHUs did present a challenge due to their large and heavy nature; we overcame this by ensuring the appropriate mechanical aids were used to facilitate their installation.

In addition, during the installation of the large duct work, we employed a specialist contractor to form the required structural openings and supporting steelwork.


The project has resulted in the academy trust now having a modern and efficient energy room and heating system for their school.