The Douay Martyrs Catholic Secondary School in Ickenham near Uxbridge has over 1,500 students. As part of the ongoing refurbishment to improve school facilities, Rivington Street Studio has designed a suite of classrooms, specialist teaching spaces, group rooms and administration areas for secondary age pupils. Particular emphasis has been placed on creating a distinct sixth form ‘hub’ with a fluid mix of formal and informal study, dining and breakout spaces based on the ethos of a university. This was further developed through the landscape design with social areas opening onto a dedicated ‘study garden’.
A key challenge was to ensure the school could remain operational throughout the works resulting in a phased project with decant into temporary buildings on a very restricted site. A modular solution was developed to provide the new build and temporary elements which imposed a rigorous discipline on the emerging design in terms of spatial planning within the strict requirements of the DfE brief.
The project was also sensitive in terms of planning both in the remodelling works to the locally listed 1930s building set within a conservation area, and the close proximity of neighbours to the boundary of the school.