Wernick, Portakabin and Algeco named as suppliers picked in September

Temporary classrooms bought by the Department for Education (DfE) in the aftermath of autumn’s ‘crumbly concrete’ crisis cost taxpayers £35m. 

More than 100 schools had the beginning of their academic year disrupted when the DfE ordered the closure of buildings containing reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete (RAAC) after three reports of unexpected ceiling collapses relating to the material. 


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Algeco was one of three firms named as a supplier

In the subsequent weeks, as government rushed to establish the presence of RAAC across the school estate and return all pupils to face-to-face learning, education secretary Gillian Keegan announced that three portable cabins suppliers had been asked to provide temporary classrooms, while eight structural surveying firms and one national propping company were also asked to help out. 

Details of the procurement process were not initially announced, but documents recently published on Contracts Finder reveal the three firms tasked with supplying temporary classrooms. 

Wernick, Portakabin and Algeco each won £11.5m contracts with the department, running from 12 September to 11 January next year. 

MPs on the education select committee were informed last week that the list of schools and colleges in England containing RAAC had grown to 231, from the 214 number issued in October. 

Mitigation measures have been put in place at around 110 schools.