Special School, Kent
A Special School for children who can’t be taught in the ‘normal’ education system, West Heath is housed in a range of buildings, some of which are Grade II Listed.
Penton Architects has a longstanding relationship with West Heath School from providing Masterplanning services to detail design of specific refurbishment projects throughout the school. This project formed part of the original Masterplan where an existing courtyard area blocked student access from the older part of the school to the newer areas. The proposals revitalised and re-formed a circulation courtyard providing a new glazed entrance space and a covered walkway linking the existing buildings.
Due to the behavioural issues of the children at this school, the design seeks to create a legible, safe environment through the architecture. Visibility and daylight are maximised whilst providing shelter and defined routes for the children to move between classrooms. The sense of ‘ownership’ for the students is captured in the text applied to the glazed walls; a wonderful quote from a former pupil, thanking the school for all it provided for their transfer into the working world.
The works included renovations to the stonework of this Grade II Listed building.