Financial close for the Blackburn & Bolton BSF project was reached on the 12 January, 2010.

Blackburn joined the national BSF programme in January 2007. The Blackburn & Bolton BSF programme involves a total of eight schools, comprising a mix of new builds and refurbishments. All three will be PFI financed.

This part of the BSF programme involves the refurbishment of Pleckgate High School and Darwen vale High School. Construction will begin in 2010, and is due to end in August 2011. Total capital expenditure will be £29 million. Following construction the operating phase of the project will last 25 years, ending in August 2036.

This BSF project will provide an opportunity to develop further extended services for children and young people at a local level, including increased access to sport, advice, guidance and health services. The project sponsor is Balfour Beatty Education, with RBC acting as their as financial advisor. The procuring authorities are Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council and Bolton Borough Council.

Barclays will provide £32.1m of senior debt to the project, with the Balfour Beatty education, BSFI and the procuring authorities investing a total of £3.26 million of subordinated debt.

Operis provided financial model auditing services, including a full tax and accounting review, on behalf of the funder, the project sponsor, BSFI and the procuring authorities.

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