Hatcher Prichard Architects has designed a new Post 16 Centre in Fishponds, Bristol. The bespoke facility was awarded BREEAM Excellent accreditation when it opened in September 2016, and provides specialist education and care for 24 young adults ranging from 16 to 19 years olds with special education needs including Severe Learning Difficulties (SLD), Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties (PMLD).
As requested by the school the building is a subtly composed form, sympathetic with the local vernacular, complementary and distinctive. It is built of well detailed, robust red brickwork to be both functional and aesthetically pleasing.
Each classroom has an external door with level access to encourage indoor and outdoor learning, and all external spaces are orientated to maximise the advantages of the site.
Internally the building is light, bright and airy throughout to stimulate pupils, and adequate and appropriate for the curriculum and organisation of the school. The ratio of teaching and learning spaces has been specifically designed to provide for the needs of SLD, ASD & PMLD Post-16 SEN education.
The building offers a calm flow of spaces with ample room to move about easily. The main corridor is bright and uncluttered with high-level north facing windows punctuated along it’s length. A bright entrance area is visible throughout the corridor to ensure that vulnerable pupils are never disorientated.
Bays are conveniently positioned throughout the centre with ample power sockets to enable PMLD equipment to be stored and charged simply. A large hygiene room with hoist provision directly off the PMLD classroom affords pupils dignity and avoids double handling of students.
Toilets and changing rooms are of a high standard and appropriately located, with careful attention given to the separation of boys and girls WC facilities. Particular importance is attached to sufficient hand washing facilities, all fittings are very hard wearing.
A mature colour palette has been used throughout to reflect the pupils’ seniority, with a bespoke highlight colour assigned to each room to reduce over-reliance by pupils on signage.
Please tap on the photo below to see a photographic diary of the building under construction:
Finally, please tap on the logo below to visit the school website for further information.