Lloyd Bore wins planning permission for special needs school
Landscape architecture practice Lloyd Bore has been involved with the project from the beginning.
The state of the art SEN school will replace the current school facility. Designed to cater for children up to the age of 18, the new complex was developed in close collaboration with the teachers to ensure the requirements of a very specific teaching environment were achieved.
Lloyd Bore’s brief was to design a fun, challenging and stimulating external environment that is safe and meets the needs of the pupils. The design meets and in places exceeds the requirements set out within ‘Building Bulletin 102: Designing for disabled children and children with special educational needs’ published by the Department for Education.
The team detailed the external areas for circulation, play, outdoor learning, and education resources. This involved the creation of individual outdoor classrooms, a communal ecology garden, a pedal cart track, active play space, arrival and departure areas and the design of functional drop off and pick up facilities.
The principal challenge was reconciling the requirement for a high level of privacy, security and safety with creating an inspiring environment for the children’s day to day activities. Lloyd Bore has been exploring imaginative alternatives to everyday playground items, such as bespoke laser cut fencing – the aim of which is to enhance the setting and contribute positively to the scheme, ensuring that the final product does not have an institutional or initimidating feel.
The site is highly sensitive in landscape terms, set within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and surrounded by attractive, mature tree cover. Lloyd Bore has also undertaken arboricultural and ecological surveys and a landscape character and visual appraisal, all of which informed the design work.