Catmose Campus

A split-site masterplan, consisting of two housing developments and a £24 million new-build community campus.

Forming an urban edge to the market town of Oakham, the Catmose Campus development is defined by a strong axial route centred on the entrance to the community campus facilities, with views through the site promoted along two parallel and two intersecting axes. Constructed on playing fields alongside the existing school buildings, the second phase of the project will redevelop these buildings into housing in order to part-fund the new-build campus.

The campus itself includes a range of educational, sports and extended service community facilities, comprising a 11-16 six form entry secondary school with a visual arts specialism and extended SEN provision, an eight court community sports centre, a public art gallery, a theatre, an adult learning centre, a Learning Disability Resource Centre and a community hub providing Information Advice and Guidance facilities and a public cafe. The project draws together our extensive educational, sports and community project experience to deliver a community learning campus that will be adaptable enough to cope with the requirements of a 21st-century learning environment.

The campus is one of only three published designs to receive a 'Good / Excellent' rating from CABE School Design Review. The project has achieved a minimum of 60% carbon reduction and a BREEAM 'very good' rating.

A new-build 11-16 six form entry secondary school with a visual arts specialism and extended SEN provision, combining best value and design quality.

Catmose College provides state-of-the-art school facilities that are adaptable enough to cope with the requirements of a 21st-century learning environment. 6 learning bases comprising 3 general teaching clusters and 3 specialist zones (science and IT, music and drama, art and DT) are arranged around a central atrium of shared resource and support areas. This design provides a 'framework for learning' that is not constrained to operating a single, imposed model; organisational flexibility in both the short and long term allows the college's curriculum to be delivered using different models without restriction.

Specification is durable and robust with long life-cycle finishes, while detailing and construction methods maximise buildability. A hybrid environmental response exceeds BREEAM and carbon reduction guidelines, while landscape proposals create a public realm as well as safe student play areas, encouraging learning opportunities and promoting biodiversity. Interiors, branding and way-finding are fully integrated and coordinated.

A multi-purpose school and community sports centre designed in line with Sport England guidance to accommodate a variety of sports at county and regional level.

Catmose Sports Centre provides spacious and flexible sporting facilities for students of Catmose College, as well as members of the local community, from young to old and from amateur to professional.

The ground floor is arranged to provide an 8-court sports hall, reception and changing space for team sports, while the first floor accommodates a fitness suite, dance studios, further changing rooms, and a viewing gallery over the main sports hall.

The building is wrapped in a translucent, high impact resistant polycarbonate shell, softening the bulk of the building when viewed against the sky and surrounding landscape. On the south elevation, the polycarbonate cladding is punctured by a large flush-faced picture window to the fitness suite and dance studios, introducing daylight and providing aspect views. At night, artificial light from the interior passes through the translucent cladding, illuminating the building from within so that is emits a subtle glow.

A community centre which accommodates the Council’s Information Advice and Guidance (IAG) community access portal, an adult learning facility and skills centre, a crèche, a community café and a public art gallery.

Integrating a large range of valuable facilities for use by the entire community, this community centre forms the heart of Catmose Campus. Co-located with Catmose College and the Catmose Sports Centre, this lively hub will become a focus for learning, sport and culture.

The incorporated art gallery provides a flexible and professional exhibition space that can operate either as a 'black box' with artificial lighting capable of adjustment to suit different exhibition media, or can be illuminated via indirect natural daylight introduced at high level.

A Learning Disability Resource Centre (LDRC) providing highly flexible activity spaces and local care facilities that enable people with learning difficulties to engage in a full range of activities within their own community.

Catmose LDRC forms part of Rutland County Council and Leicestershire County Council's joint strategy for the integration of health and social care for learning disability services. Traditional provision, in which people experience a limited set of available services, has been eschewed in favour of more personalised and flexible health and social care.

Spaces have been configured to provide the most flexible use of space possible, with the main activity rooms capable of being combined or separated as required. Outdoor learning is encouraged through a dedicated sensory garden, while the privacy and dignity of users is preserved by providing direct access to a calming room and personal care spaces.

The aim is to create an environment that focuses on particular senses such as feel, vision and sound. A multi-sensory room enables young people with learning difficulties to enjoy a wide range of sensory experiences, helping to facilitate therapy, learning and relaxation.

A community theatre that provides flexible, multi-purpose and professional performing arts spaces, separated by a series of full-height moveable partitions.

Performance spaces can be organised in a variety of different arrangements, as required by each individual performance or activity. At maximum capacity, moveable partitions open up the drama space to the theatre and terraced seating area to provide a 'traverse' performance arrangement for whole school assemblies and events such as exhibitions, markets and fashion shows.

Integration of the theatre with the drama studio forms an 'end-stage' arrangement for traditional theatre productions, digital media installations, concerts and other smaller performances. The theatre and drama spaces can also operate independently for the more conventional delivery of Catmose College's music and drama curriculum.

The theatre is equipped with a professional-quality sound and light box that supports professional dance, theatre and music production for both the school and community.

Description from the architects


14 photos and 6 drawings

Building Activity

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