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Buckley Gray Yeoman completes boarding school refurb

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Buckley Gray Yeoman has completed this refurbishment of grade II-listed boarding houses at Roedean school near Brighton

The practice has overhauled the independent girls’ school’s four Victorian boarding houses, built in the arts and crafts style.

The refurbished boarding houses include more than 200 bedrooms, dining rooms, bathrooms, drawing rooms, and other social spaces.

Oliver Blond, headmaster of Roedean School, said: ‘The refurbishment of the boarding houses underlines Roedean’s commitment to the highest pastoral standards, and creates a “home from home” feeling which is so important for those girls for whom school is their home during term-time. It draws the building’s fine heritage and architectural features together with the comfort and welcoming feel of a contemporary home.

‘The new boarding houses have certainly had a very strong and positive impact on the girls, their parents, and staff at Roedean.’

The architect’s view

The atmosphere throughout the boarding houses is of a home from home, each differentiated by different colour palettes of blue, red, green and yellow that are played out in the fabrics and carpet designs. Furniture and lighting by British design brands including Ercol, James Burleigh and Innermost combine with William Morris wallpapers, bespoke and handmade rugs and carpets and light-hearted details such as plywood dear heads. Artwork by past students hangs throughout the common areas; a personal touch that gives a presence to the Old Roedeanians. The refurbished spaces are lively and comfortable with a contemporary design aesthetic that makes the most of the school’s rich heritage and the impressive original detailing of the buildings.

Key to the refurbishment was the transformation of the student bedrooms. Most are one- or two-bed with a small number of three-bed rooms.  We designed bespoke furniture and fittings to maximise the available space, creating warm, welcoming and well-organised rooms suitable for sleeping and private study. The bespoke furniture system integrates lighting fixtures and frames the windows and sea views beyond. A neutral palette is enlivened by highlights of blue, red, green or yellow.

Project data

Location Brighton
Type of project education
Client Roedean School
Architect BuckleyGrayYeoman
Contractor Barley McNaughton
Contract administrator and quantity surveyor Stace
Services and structural engineer URS Infrastructure & Environment
Planning consultant Parker Dann

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