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Design Engine lodges plans for Winchester College revamp

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Winchester City Council has approved plans by Design Engine to modernise the southern campus of Winchester College, a private boys boarding school 

Proposals for the scheme at the 700-student school in College Street and Kingsgate Street, south of Wincester Cathedral, include a new medical centre and support services building.

The scheme will also include a sports centre, divided into three connected ’pavilions’, comprising a swimming pool, sports hall and fitness suite. 

Design features include a timber roof over the swimming pool with external zinc cladding. 

Design Engine director Richard Jobson said: ‘The project is an ideal opportunity to allow the qualities that exist throughout Winchester College to migrate down Kingsgate Road, creating a beautiful new addition to their campus.’

If the plans are approved, work is set to start on site in summer 2018, with a completion date scheduled for summer 2021.

Architects’ view

Extensive analysis of the southern campus context and topography is being used to develop an architecture that is appropriate in scale and context to this unique site. While modern in style, Design Engine has drawn inspiration from the past in both form and materiality, to create a building that is sympathetic to its context.

While it is acknowledged that any new proposal needs to read as a coherent architectural intervention, it is felt that replacing this series of buildings with a large ‘everything under one roof’ sports centre would be inappropriate. It was therefore proposed that the physical education centre is broken into three separate ‘pavilions’ comprising the swimming pool, sports hall, and the fitness suite.

In respect of the historic northern campus, the development is characterised by strong horizontal datums formed by boundary walls that in many places are seamlessly integrated into buildings. These define a series of interlocking courtyards and larger playing fields. Historically the silhouette of pitched roof buildings, spires and chimneys broke these horizontal datums. This is referenced in the complex geometry of the roof forms that are intended to break up its silhouette from all angles when viewed in the round.

The college’s campus is characterised by two types of building; in general the larger, more public buildings tend to be constructed from flint walls, while the domestic buildings, especially along Kingsgate Road, are characterised by red brick typologies. This hierarchical palette of materials is reflected tonally in the grey brick of the sports centre and the red brick of the ancillary support buildings. The buildings are enhanced with patterned brick bonds, flint detailing and stone features.


Winchester plan


Source: Design Engine

Project data

Location Winchester College, Winchester, Hampshire
Type of project Private School
Client Winchester College
Architect Design Engine Architects
Landscape architect LUC (Land Use Consultants)
Planning consultant Adams Hendry Consulting
Structural engineer Arup
M&E consultant Skelly & Couch
Quantity surveyor McNaughts
Funding Private
Tender date Early 2018
Start on site date Summer 2018
Completion date Summer 2021
Contract duration 3 years
Gross internal floor area 10,850m² 



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