A significant number of our Junior and Infant school buildings in the UK date back to the Victorian era, especially those in more rural locations. There has been a lot of talk in recent weeks leading up to the election of spending on schools. At some point many of these buildings will need replacing, but what should a new school look like? Should it be traditional, built from brick or should we be designing more fun, vibrant and inspiring buildings?
A little while ago Thinking Buildings obtained planning consent for this beauty of a building to convert the Grade 2* listed school house into residential use. The building sits close to the centre of Cirencester and it was good to visit it once more to meet with the new owner who will develop the scheme to construction. Thinking Buildings really enjoys the challenge of working with listed buildings and this is an excellent example of how we were able to develop a positive relationship with English Heritage and the council’s Conservation Officer.
Thinking Buildings recently secured a commission to design a new multi-million pound Sports Centre for an independent school. The competition design was created using our BIM software including in-house visualisations and a fly around video that really helped communicate the proposals.
The scheme includes a 4 court sports hall, squash courts, sports science classroom, changing/support facilities and a social area that can be used for internal and external events. Externally, the design included a new hockey pitch and tennis courts. The focus of the design is the welcoming glazed entrance that gives the building identity and presence within the school campus – aiming to avoid the bland, bulky and windowless architecture that is often associated with the function of this type of large format, big volume sports buildings.
Thinking Buildings are currently working with the school and delivery contractor to finalise the brief, scope and design with the aim to progress to planning application stage in summer 2017.
Thinking Buildings have been working with Woodstock CE Primary School in Oxfordshire to create new pupil changing rooms. An existing courtyard area is being infilled to provide changing rooms for girls and boys adjacent to the main hall. The project is due for completion at the beginning of July.
We’d be happy to talk to any other schools needing extensions or refurbishment. Maybe you need some advice?