Ewell Grove Primary and Nursery School represented an ambitious and challenging undertaking with the aim to double its capacity to 459 children while minimising impact and maintaining operational functionality throughout, working to a modest budget and in a heritage setting.

Winner: Best Educational Building – LABC South East Awards 2019

Design Approach

To achieve expansion on this tight site at the heart of the Conservation Area HLM developed a highly contextual, contemporary design approach which complimented the meticulously crafted Arts and Craft existing building.

The project consists of a new teaching block sitting prominently on the street frontage and solidifies the junction between the existing school and neighbouring houses with intersecting gable ends. The new hall block takes a different but complementary approach, responding instead to the decorative, well-ordered rear façade of the existing building and the area of heavily wooded landscaping to the South with the double gable end façades clad in scorched timber. Existing facilities were also refurbished to achieve a level of consistency. All three buildings together form a collection each with their own individual character.

Building energy consumption is reduced through passive energy saving features incorporated into the design of the buildings. These include a higher specification of building thermal elements which exceed minimum Building Regulation requirements, a natural daylighting strategy with sophisticated lighting control, heat-recovery, low-energy fittings and occupancy controls.