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Work underway to replace heritage roof of 164-year old Brighouse school

A Brighouse-based energy efficiency and heritage roofing specialist is to upgrade the roof of 164-year local school.

Ploughcroft, one of the only construction companies in the region qualified to complete such specialist work, is undertaking planned maintenance at work at William Henry Smith School – a residential special school – which will also make the building more energy efficient

The company will restore the roof of the school’s Newton building to its original glory and bring it into the twenty first century by installing state-of-the-art insulation.

These measures will help reduce heat loss through the roof by up to 75 per cent and in turn will help to make significant savings on heating costs, making it a sound investment for the school’s future.

Caroline Booth, business manager at William Henry Smith School said: “There is a lot of history behind our school and maintaining the buildings is important to the efficient running and management of the complex.

“Refurbishing the roof is an important aspect of our Planned Maintenance Strategy and the additional insulation energy savings that we can reinvest back into our school.”

Roger Tilbrook, Managing Director of PSK Building Surveyors Ltd, the Contract Administrator for the project, said: “We’re extremely pleased with the quality of the work, which was finished on time and within budget.”

Chris Hopkins, managing director at Ploughcroft, said: “Being a Brighouse-based business ourselves, we’re delighted to be working with William Henry Smith School.

“We are proud to play a part in helping maintain a building that has such an interesting local history, and the project was the opportunity to combine our two passions; heritage work, and eco roofing.

“The school plays such an important role in our community today and the building’s upkeep is essential for this to continue”.

William Henry Smith School dates back to 1850, and was originally built as a family residence before being used as a hospital during World War One, where it treated more than 1,970 patients.

In 1916 the estate was bought by William Smith, the first Mayor of Brighouse, who created the Smith Foundation Trust and set it up as an orphanage. In 1922 on Smith’s death, the estate was left to the Trust.

Following the Second World War the trustees were forced to reconsider the role of the trust and plans were put into place to convert the orphanage into a special school.

It was then, in September 1961, that the William Henry Smith Special School for boys was founded, based on the site and established by the Trust.

Today, the school helps to support boys aged eight to 16 who experience social, emotional and behavioural difficulties; also meeting the specialist needs of those with Specific Learning Difficulties such as ADHD and ASD.

The school offers vital support for parents and carers and plays an important role in the local community by preparing these young boys for adulthood.

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William Henry Smith School



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