CONSTRUCTION work to create one of the country's greenest schools has entered its second phase.

Utility services such as gas and water have already been installed on the site at Queen Elizabeth School at Pamphill, along with a sub-station and drainage facilities, so foundation work for the new teaching blocks can now begin.

Part of phase two will also include tubes being installed underground that will pre-cool or pre-heat air before it enters the building instead of using gas central heating or air conditioning.

The new-look school will also have a sustainable, environmentally friendly design.

Construction will incorporate 21st century features such as woodchip burning boilers, solar and wind power, rain water recycling, recycled building materials and low energy usage.

Headteacher Andy Puttock said: "We are very excited to see the next phase of the project begin.

"A lot of work is going into this complex and detailed scheme and I, the staff and pupils are looking forward to seeing the new school beginning to take shape."

The new school will also have a "sustainability educational centre".

This will be run as an educational centre providing courses, teacher training and resources to QE and the surrounding schools.

Dorset County Council cabinet member for children's services, Cllr Toni Coombs, said: "Not only is the rebuild great news for the school and local community, it is also wonderful that QE will be recognised nationally as an environmentally friendly school.

"I'm particularly pleased that the students from QE and the feeder schools have played a key part throughout the design of their school, demonstrating our desire to put children and young people at the heart of all we do."

In 2006, the school was top in a ranking of Dorset secondary schools most needing replacement.

The rebuild has attracted £30.5 million of government funding with additional investment from the county council's modernising schools project.

The new school building is due to open by autumn 2009.

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