The school currently has capacity for 240 pupils aged, 4-19 (mixed) and provides for pupils with a wide range of learning difficulties. At present the school is split across two sites, the existing buildings are generally not fit for purpose and are in poor condition. The project includes the demolition of the existing buildings and the consolidation of the whole school onto one site into a new and appropriate learning environment.
The new school building seeks align with the schools educational vision that; supports a strong approach to the school community ethos; provides a rite of passage for every child moving through the school; provides a holistic sensory approach and facilitates the requirements of providing a strong team around the child.
The new school building is formed from a hub block containing the principle school accommodation and two splayed wings of teaching accommodation behind. This arrangement is in response to the restricted nature of the site; the need to maximise external play areas, and the strong phased arrangement of Lower, Middle, and Upper School accommodation.
The hub and wings are connected together by two link blocks which accommodate a library to the ground floor and department offices to the first and second floors. The points at which the wings come together forms a central vertical circulation ‘heart’ to the school from which all accommodation radiates.
Throughout the design process the design team have worked closely to ensure that the project meets the tight budget set by the EFA and the PSBP programme. The design utilises standard components and building methods to maximise value for money while also ensuring that the internal environment is robust and supports future expansion. The design follows low embodied energy principles with a specially designed façade treatment which enhances hybrid mixed mode natural/mechanical ventilation and natural day lighting.
Sketches by Haverstock