Beta We're making some changes to Find out what's new, give feedback or read FAQs here
Skill Up Summer School with Grimshaw Architects
​Jim Stephenson

Skill Up Summer School with Grimshaw Architects

​This five-day summer school, led and delivered by architects from Grimshaw, will provide an introduction to architectural education, practice and concepts. For ages 15-18.

Designed by Grimshaw Architects, the beautiful structure that now surrounds the world's only surviving tea clipper, the Cutty Sark, opened in 2012. This five-day summer school, led and delivered by architects from Grimshaw, will provide an introduction to architectural education, practice and concepts, using the Cutty Sark as a backdrop and example.

For ages 15 to 18.

Monday, 31 July – Location: RIBA

The week begins with an introduction to the course’s aims and objectives and an overview of key architectural principals. Participants will get to know one another and the course facilitators in advance of embarking on a week-long design and build project. In the morning, we will focus on architectural styles and history with a close examination of original drawings, prints and models from the RIBA’s world-renowned collections. Working closely with objects and artefacts created by the world’s greatest architects, the session will provide a foundation for your own creations over the course of the week. Day 1 concludes with a closer look at Grimshaw’s ground-breaking work in the high-tech movement.

Tuesday, 1 July – Location: Cutty Sark

Day 2 begins with an introduction to the project brief and breaking into design teams. On a special tour of the Cutty Sark, we will hear directly from the architects and museum staff about the design, construction and functionality of the structure surrounding the Cutty Sark, in preparation for your work in creating an exhibition pavilion for Greenwich. In the afternoon, we will focus on drawing, both as a tool for observing and understanding built spaces, and as a means of conveying your initial pavilion ideas and messages to the group.

Wednesday, 2 July – Location: Cutty Sark

Day 3 focuses on structure and systems. We will explore different structural forms. Taking inspiration from the structure of the Cutty Sark’s enclosure, we will look at how simple components can come together to make complex systems by experimenting with model-marking. You then will work independently to create your pavilion models with different materials that will form components of the ‘Greenwich Expo’.

Thursday, 3 July – Location: Cutty Sark

We begin the morning thinking about place, place-making and sustainability. What makes a place successful? How does architecture affect the way we work, play, live and learn? How can we build in a way that leaves the world a better place? Where should your pavilion go to fit in with its surroundings and create a successful community? In the afternoon, you will swap projects with a course mate who will offer a different take on your pavilion and design an extension! We will then bring together drawing and model-making practices as you work towards completing your brief.

Friday, 4 July – Location: RIBA

We will spend the morning of Day 5 preparing and consolidating your work for the afternoon’s exhibition and presentation. After lunch, you will present your work to a select panel from the Grimshaw, RIBA and the Cutty Sark, for comment and discussion. A selection of work will be featured on and RIBA social media networks.

All participants will receive a certificate of completion at the end of the course.

This summer school will take place both at the Cutty Sark in Greenwich and at the RIBA (66 Portland Place). This drop off workshop takes place daily from Monday 31 July to Friday 4 August 11am to 4pm. Lunch is not provided, so please provide a packed lunch for your child to eat in their break.

With Grimshaw Architects in partnership with Cutty Sark

See our full Summer programme of Learning workshops here.