Printworks Campus
Campus Reconfiguration, Leeds City College



Leeds City College operated out of six locations across the city.

As part of its long term estates strategy, the college aimed to consolidate multiple buildings into purpose built campuses, complementing the college offering and student learning styles.

As part of these phased consolidations and improvements, the college needed a construction partner to reorganise three buildings at the Printworks Campus.

Sewell competitively tendered for the project and was appointed as the college’s delivery partner.


The scheme needed to be completed within a tight six week window whilst the college was closed to students for the summer. Although mainstream teaching wasn’t scheduled, some spaces would remain operational for staff, therefore maximum consideration was given to the flow of users to ensure disruption was kept to a minimum.

Sewell worked with the college’s estates team to develop a safe and deliverable programme of works. Particular thought was given to noisy works, which were scheduled around operational building hours.

As the project was complex, intricate and based in a live environment, Sewell arranged for the client’s Health and Safety Manager to work on site throughout.



The programme of work included the remodelling of office spaces across three floors and two buildings to relocate the college’s hair and beauty department, and permanent and temporary alterations within the third building to create suitable environments for administration, classroom learning and library resources.

A seven-day working week and 12-hour shift patterns were put in place. The integration of loose furniture had to be seamless to ensure the programme stayed on course. Therefore, the team coordinated thoroughly with the specialist fit out contractor, so the hair and beauty work stations, back wash sinks and specialist equipment could be reinstalled appropriately.

From day one, there were more than 30 labourers on site, with two thirds of those from LS postcodes, ensuring £1m of the budget stayed in the local economy.

Due to the fast track nature of the project, Sewell engaged with the college’s facilities team daily, walking the site to ensure the smooth running of the programme and to deal with any issues as they arose. Additionally, weekly site meetings were held with the estates team to talk them through the week ahead, managing expectations and informing them on how any issues were being alleviated.

The team opted to re-use many materials and equipment, as the previous construction works were relatively new, which created savings for the college. Doors, ironmongery, skirting boards and architraves, as well as mechanical and electrical equipment, were removed with care, which allowed them to be re-installed.

A specialist hoist was brought in to transport redundant materials from the third floor out of the building and to bring in new materials, eliminating risk from a manual handling perspective, ensuring timeliness of delivery and therefore not obstructing users, as the buildings were still occupied.

Consideration was given to ensuring the building would have the longest possible lifecycle on completion of the refurbishment works. As a result, a number of environmental concepts were designed into it to make it a ‘green’ development. This included the installation of a rain water harvesting system and photo voltaic panels for electricity generation.

The building was developed using 3D modelling and is fully BIM compliant.


The restructuring works were delivered on time, on budget, with zero accidents and zero defects.

They included:

  • Working in an operational facility across three buildings
  • Completing £1.5m of works within a tight six-week programme
  • Relocating hair and beauty, administration teams, reception and the library
  • Using a majority local supply chain


We've moved at pace to reshape the campus into functional but impressive spaces. All phases have been delivered in the agreed timescales and to budget. This has occurred through development of trust and delivering of premises by all parties.

Jason Challender Director of Physical Resources at Leeds City College