Like many others in the UK, Oaklands and Napier Schools have suffered decades of clumsy building additions. However, the latest interventions, completed in late 2012, support their long-term aspirations for education and community use on the sites, and sit sympathetically alongside the existing classroom buildings.
Both projects were commissioned by Medway Council in 2010 and funded under their Primary Capital Programme.
Extensive consultation with the schools and local people led to the development of a brief that focused on the creation of a hub within each community. Improved external play and flexible learning spaces were important to both schools, alongside the necessity to link the Junior and Infant Schools in both sites.
Recent building additions and superfluous structures were removed from both buildings and a new link building created, allowing for more useable playground area.
New staff accommodation was created at the heart of the school - the crossroads of the junior and infant buildings, while providing teachers the ability to keep an eye on the children from the building.
Both schools provide new facilities for the local community, with Oaklands opening a new purpose built Children’s Centre on site.