The School produced a new master plan during 2016 which has informed the Governing Body and Senior Managers of the options for developing the School estate and facilities in order to continue to improve provision for pupils. The plan envisages three phases each of five years from 2016.
The School is in liaison with Waverley Local Planning Authority so that proposals within the master plan conform with the new local plan, when it is circulated, and have general agreement from planning officers. This liaison is important to the smooth implementation of the development of the School.
The first project to be completed as part of the master plan was the total refurbishment of Lintotts artificial pitch to retain the existing four full sized artificial pitches in the campus.
The first major project to commence under the first phase is the extension to the existing West House so that the new building will contain two girls’ boarding houses. These will be West House, the bulk of which will be the new building, and Rhodes House in the existing boarding house. Construction started in mid-October and is scheduled to finish in early September. The project is currently on programme and budget.
van Hasselt Centre (vHC)
The new academic centre to house the English, Humanities, Business Studies and Economics Departments as well as Careers will be named after former headmaster, Marc van Hasselt, hence vHC. The innovative design by leading architects Allies and Morrison on the site of the squash courts sees the new classroom building surround the squash court building which will, in turn, be converted into a café for pupils with a Sixth Form leisure area in a first floor mezzanine. The design of this building is being finalised in January and February 2017 and it is hoped to start work in April. Construction is forecast to take 60 weeks and so practical completion will be during summer 2018, well before academic year 2018/19 starts.
Fourth Girls’ Boarding House (4G)
The move of academic departments into the new vHC will free space in the Connaught block at the front of the School. This will then enable the conversion of this area back to its original purpose as a boarding house and specifically the fourth girls’ house. A design is being drawn up at the moment and it is hoped to finalise plans by the end of 2017 so that work can commence in the second half of 2018, for completion by September 2019.
There are two enabling projects associated with the first phase of the master plan. The School’s works department currently occupies a compound in the middle of the School on the site of the new vHC. It will be demolished during 2017 and new facilities provided behind the sports centre. The demise of squash courts will be short-lived as new glass backed courts are to be constructed onto the side of the sports centre, to the right of the building. The work should start before the end of Lent Term 2017 and with construction being simple, completion is scheduled for late spring.
It would be understandable if the Prep School took a back seat during the first phase of development given the amount of work at the Senior School. However, the Governing Body is determined that the Prep School will continue to provide sector leading education. A new academic centre is therefore to be built in the heart of the School as a statement building. The innovative design by architects Tate Harmer will be truly impressive and house science laboratories, home economics, design technology and form classrooms; most overlooking top pitch. The design will be finalised in January 2017 with work commencing in March 2017.