The £45bn Building Schools for the Future programme proved it’s weathering the recession this week pretty well this week, with two major schemes reaching financial close.

The deals - on the first phase of the £2.4bn Birmingham BSF and a £500m scheme in Durham – prove that, despite continuing issues over the cost of lending, the programme remains attractive to private sector investors. With the uncertainty surrounding future public spending, the continued ability of private sector partners to raise finance to supplement government funds surely ought to boost the programme’s chances of surviving a cull of public spending after the next election.

This week, Building has been looking at the Birmingham deal in depth, and also some innovative teacher-designed totem poles in Kent.