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Fri February 23 2024

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Gilbert-Ash signs for £31m St Paul’s junior school

9 Feb Gilbert-Ash has been appointed to build a new junior school for St Paul’s School in west London.

St Paul's' new junior school has been designed by architect Hawkins Brown
St Paul's' new junior school has been designed by architect Hawkins Brown

The £31m project involves the construction of two new buildings as well as playgrounds and associated landscaping works for the historic school, which sits in a 45-acre site next to the River Thames in Barnes.

Junior School West will be a three-storey building housing a teaching block and changing facilities while Junior School East will be a two-storey facility comprising a teaching block and double height hall.

The West building forms the central ‘heart’ space of the school, with multi-functional exhibition space surrounded by classrooms. The East building will be linked to the West building by a covered external play space named The Barn.

Project architect is Hawkins Brown.

Targeting a BREEAM rating of excellent, the new buildings will be heated with air source heat pumps with photovoltaic panels on the roof, which will also have a green roof system.

External drainage incorporates storm and foul water diversion, porous surface overflow pipework and a rain garden.

Interior fit-out plans include acoustic wall panels and slatted timber acoustic panels and lining, while flooring will vary from engineered hard wood flooring, linoleum and carpeted areas.

Soft landscaping will include shrub herbaceous planting, hedge planting and grassland meadow, in addition to a rain garden. Hard landscaping will include linear concrete block paving, permeable black and coloured tarmac, permeable resin bound aggregate, play bark and a hybrid turf system, in addition to insitu rubber safety surfaces.

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School life will continue during the construction period, which is due to complete in autumn 2025, with pupils and staff decanted to temporary accommodation.

St Paul’s School was founded in 1509 by John Colet, the Dean of St Paul’s. Its governance was entrusted to the fellowship of the Mercers of London, the Premier Guild of the City of London, to act as governors of the new school. Following the great fire of London in 1666, St Paul’s School moved location four times before settling in 1968 at its present site at Barnes where it provides education for around 1,000 boys from the ages of four to 18 years old.

Senior school facilities were revamped between 2011 and 2019, with a new drama centre and Samuel Pepys Theatre completed in 2014 and a general teaching block, dining hall and library completed in 2020.

Gilbert-Ash managing director Ray Hutchinson, said: “St Paul’s School is steeped in history and has been providing first class education for boys for hundreds of years. This project will ensure this legacy continues in Barnes for generations to come.

“Gilbert-Ash has a growing reputation for delivering excellent projects in the education sector, with many of these in partnership with the team at Hawkins\Brown. Together we have delivered stand-out projects at both City of London Freemen’s School, Central Foundation Boys’ School and The Bartlett School of Architecture.

“We are looking forward to once again working in collaboration with Hawkins\Brown, St Paul’s School and of course the other teams on this exciting project.”

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