By LOUISE THOMASON
Work began at Bells Brae Primary School this week to install temporary classrooms which will be used while the building’s windows are replaced.
To the delight of enthusiasts, one of Shetland’s largest cranes was on site to move the huts into position.
The Demag crane is owned and run by Peterson SBS. Weighing around 70 tonnes, the truck mounted crane has a lifting capacity of 250 tonnes. It has a 58 metre telescopic main jib but fully extended, with fly jibs attached, it can reach an impressive 111 metres.
The crane is secured by 31 tonnes of ballast, although it has the capability to handle a counterweight of up to 100 tonnes.
The crane was finished at the school by Wednesday afternoon.
The 10 huts will act as temporary classrooms while the school’s windows are replaced. Problems with the windows have been long running.
The current windows were installed in 1994 when major refurbishments were made to the building’s academic block.
However leaks and problems with window vents causing floods meant work was again done in 1996 to try to rectify the problems, resulting in a visit from the managing director of the firm which supplied the windows.
More recently, there was further cause for concern when a pane from a window in the third floor fell out in February last year.
SIC education service quality improvement officer James Cuthbert said on Wednesday that works had started well and it is hoped most of it will be completed in the school holidays to avoid disruption to classes.