Developing an oversized, but underused playing field, we created a new school building where every voice matters and vegetable plots formed a key part of the design.
The project also allowed Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council to achieve targets set in the regional framework plan to provide 150 foundation year places at the school.
To carry out a feasibility appraisal in order to replan the school grounds and make better use of the oversized and underused playing field to cater for the school’s new foundation stage provision.
We held detailed discussions with both Sport England and the local authority to obtain agreement over the new site layouts.
We then collaborated closely with school heads, governors, Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council, Kier Construction and the local community. Alongside we carried out wide ranging research into successful school environments and historical references in order to identify the architectural approach for the design of the new building.
Our aim was to create a school where every voice matters, that is fair and open, and that could be divided into smaller spaces, as well as being part of a united school.
This led us to develop a non-hierarchical radial plan where classes are clustered around a central core. The core became a space where all students can gather and where every classroom opens directly onto for informal teaching.
The classrooms were designed to create a variety of flexible spaces for different learning activities.
Integral to our plan was to integrate the architectural form of the building within the landscape by designing an orchard and vegetable plots maintained by water from the roof of the building.
Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council said:
“The architecture is beautiful and inspirational epitomising our educational vision.”