Following a significant increase in pupil numbers, Ernehale Junior School were able to secure funding from the Local Authority to provide an extension to their existing 1960s building, together with internal reconfiguration of existing spaces, appointing Baily Garner to develop the project from feasibility through to completion.
The new extension provides 2 no. 60 m2 classrooms, each accommodating up to 30 pupils and having direct access to external amenity spaces, together with a shared storeroom for teachers, a circulation corridor linking to the existing building and an accessible WC, so that accessible toilet facilities are now provided at each level within the school. The design of the new block compliments the style and scale of the existing school building, with windows to match and a restricted palette of low maintenance materials used. Photovoltaic panels are included to achieve renewable energy targets, whilst roof lights maximise natural daylight and corner aspect windows with sliders provide natural ventilation.
The project presented some challenges including constraints relating to parking at planning stage, the discovery of asbestos during internal reconfiguration works and the position of the new extension on top of an embankment. Situated in an elevated position the new building is a focal point for visitors to the school and provides much needed, high quality additional teaching space.