[#GREATSCHOOLS] Goat Lees Primary School was developed to address the needs of a growing population in Kennington, Ashford, Kent
The designers were able to draw on the collective experience of a consultation group comprising seven local head teachers to inform the brief and develop the building and the site. Consultation with local residents reinforced the community connection.
The site is flanked by typical 1980s and 90s buildings, and it was felt that the new school building should respond to the local urban fabric in a contemporary fashion, drawing on the materials and scale of the surrounding properties but addressing a new vernacular to create a focal point for the local community.
The design creates two distinct wings, providing hall and admin space to the north and a fan of classrooms to the south with direct access to outdoor space.
A central, glazed library connects the two wings and accommodates a curved screen located on the building’s central axis which directs the year groups to their classrooms. Bespoke graphics featuring the seasons of the year provide a focal point.
The hall emerges from the site, drawing the eye beyond the traditional 80s/90s vernacular
The requirement to maximise natural daylight and enhance visual links between internal and external space has influenced the building form. The main hall space is designed to collect light from the east via a high-level glazed panel; classrooms are lit via high-level north-facing windows and large elements of glazing to the south, shaded via a timber canopy.
Externally, the hall form emerges from the site and can be viewed through gaps in the buildings, drawing the eye beyond the traditional 80s-90s vernacular to a special place at the heart of a community.
Internal area 1,396m²
Start on site 22 October 2012
Completion 23 August 2013
Client Kent County Council
Structural engineer Crofton Design
M&E Crofton Design
QS Academy Consulting Solutions
Sustainability and BREEAM assesssor MLM
Project manager Janet Streek, Kent County Council
Main contractor WW Martin