Willmott Dixon will start construction on £23m Harlow school in January 2010

Architect Jestico + Whiles has secured planning consent for Passmores Secondary School and Technology College in Harlow, Essex.

Work on the school, which will be built by Willmott Dixon, will begin in January 2010. The school is scheduled to open in September 2011.

Passmores School, with the permission and funding of Essex County Council, will be a two-storey radial design and will accommodate 12,000 students. Its naturally-ventilated design will be constructed predominantly from timber, and will use biomass boilers as a part of its heat source.

The project has been well-received by Essex Design Initiative (EDI), who have commended the school’s design as “exemplar”. It is expected that the building will receive at least a “Very Good” BREAMM rating, upon its completion.

The head teacher of Passmores School, Vic Goddard, praised Jestico + Whiles for having produced “a stunning design” and for delivering “something we can all be proud of.”