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Cotham School Bristol : Avon Education Architecture
Bristol Education Development – design by Walters and Cohen in England
page updated 31 Jul 2016 ;
Cotham School – Photos
Design: Walters and Cohen
Built under the Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme.
26 May 2009
Walters and Cohen’s CABE ‘Excellent’ school goes on site
Building work has begun on the redevelopment of Cotham School in Bristol, designed by leading school designers Walters and Cohen, as part of Bristol City Council’s £100 million project to rebuild five secondary schools and construct a new special school under Wave 4 of the Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme.
Since receiving the CABE ‘Excellent’ rating for the school’s design, Walters and Cohen has continued collaborating with Bristol Local Education Partnership – which includes the project development and construction group Skanska – to deliver the substantial refurbishment and development of Cotham School.
The 22-month construction programme, which received planning permission in November 2008, is informed by the desire to replace existing school buildings that are no longer fit for purpose, and accommodate the increase in pupil numbers from 1296 to 1480.
The design improves the use of the school’s outdoor spaces; a covered, external circulation spine connects the new building with the existing building, which simplifies student movement across the site and provides a range of external sports, teaching and social facilities and comfortable informal settings for student interaction.
The design process included extensive consultation with the client body, staff and students, which was an important part of establishing the brief. The design is a contemporary response to the existing handsome 1930s grammar school building and includes the introduction of some timber rain- and sun-screening for the external circulation.
Cindy Walters, Director of Walters and Cohen, said, “Our ambition for Cotham School is to create transformational teaching spaces that will accommodate growing pupil numbers and enable them to be used for different purposes. We hope that by creating this new environment, the students and staff will benefit greatly in terms of their learning and their enjoyment of the space.”
Bristol City Council added, “The redevelopment of Cotham School is part of Bristol City Council’s wider ambition to improve the building and facilities within schools in the city. We are delighted that the proposal at Cotham School received a CABE ‘Excellent’ rating and are excited to think that, in the near future, we will have one of the country’s leading school designs on our doorstep.”
Malcolm Willis, Headteacher of Cotham School said, “Cotham School is delighted to be part of the latest wave of secondary school improvement in Bristol. Students, staff, governors, parents and our community have made a significant input into the design process and we feel that Walters and Cohen have been very sensitive and responsive to our needs”.
Paul Shadbolt, General Manager of Bristol LEP, said: “This is a great day for Bristol – we’re delighted that work has started at Cotham and the five other school sites. We are developing schools that will help to radically transform teaching and learning for students, staff and local communities.”
Cotham School is due be completed in 2010 / 11.
Cotham School Bristol images / information received May 2009
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