Newnham building project reaches Topping Out milestone

Topping Out ceremony

Work to create state-of-the-art student and conference facilities at Newnham College has reached an important milestone – the new building now stands at its full height of 14 metres.

A traditional ‘topping-out’ ceremony was held on Friday, October 6 2017 to mark the occasion as Newnham celebrated the halfway point of the project.

Construction of en-suite accommodation, a new Porters’ Lodge, gym, café, conference facilities and a new suite of offices and supervision rooms began a year ago when a building called Strachey, which was built in the 1960s, was demolished because it would have cost £15 million to carry out urgent refurbishment work.

It is expected that the first students will move into the new rooms in autumn 2018.

The event was held on the roof of the new structure which now stands at 14 metres/45ft tall.

All of the guests had a chance to sign part of the new building for posterity and the section of wall that people signed will now be hidden and potentially rediscovered at some point in the future.

The ceremony was led by Professor Dame Carol Black, Principal of Newnham College. She thanked everyone at the College who had been instrumental in developing the plans, Walters & Cohen Architects, Gleeds property and construction consultancy, and SDC Builders Ltd, the construction company tasked with building the new facilities.

Dame Carol said: “This ceremony marks a new milestone for the College, our new building will respect the historic Champneys design of Newnham whilst taking us forward into a dynamic and exciting future.

“This project is the most significant Newnham has undertaken for a generation and we have the end product in sight thanks to the support and hard work of everyone involved.”

Watch the livestream of the construction work 

Watch the timelapse footage of the building work