London’s Croydon is home to the best designed school of the past year, according to The Architectural Review.
Architects Hayhurst and Co. completed an extension – clad in gold-coloured tiles – to Whitehorse Manor School last year, and the project has now been named overall winner in the magazine’s School Awards 2015.
‘It’s a wonderful piece of embroidery – somewhere that feels a good place to learn and go,’ said Design Museum director Deyan Sudjic, one of the competition’s judges. ‘It’s giving the young people the sense that education matters.’
The copper-clad extension unifies the school’s original Victorian building and a separate 1970s structure, allowing 210 more pupils to attend.
In total, Hayhurst and Co. created 1,400 sq m of internal and exterior space, providing seven new classrooms, an administration hub, six overhauled classrooms and a bigger assembly hall.
Another judge, ex-FAT director Sam Jacob, added: ‘As an addition to a Victorian school, the interventions have transformed what is an old idea of a school and what education is into something that feels incredibly contemporary and incredibly liberating.’
Entries came in from as far as China and Portugal but the school in Croydon took the crown.