Sarah Wigglesworth’s first new-build school is exemplary in so many ways. The diagram is clear: three fingers of accommodation with play spaces in between. The rigour has resulted in a highly functional but exciting building, full of curiosity but simple in plan form. The services are integrated into the children’s learning. The snaking copper sprinkler pipes and the flying service ducts for example encourage them to ask questions. The playfulness continues into the classrooms, with traffic lights indicating CO2 levels. Then there are the see-through rainwater pipes and the hundred square metres of photovoltaics.
The school deserves high praise for its design quality, functionality, sustainability and aesthetics, but most of all for the joy it brings to all its users.