A building that connects two worlds, the real school world and the secret garden that echoes the fantasy world of Narnia. This was what the pupils at Belvue School outside London wanted from their new premises, and Studio Weave took their wishes on board when designing the new part of the school. The premises had to be adapted for children with special needs, plus they needed to be located between the existing main building and the nearby woods, of which the school is custodian, giving the children clear contact with nature.
The structural frame is constructed using larch, with exterior cladding made from cedar. Internally, birch plywood gives the school a light and airy feel. As a further nod to the world of fairytales, the building has angular windows finished with sawtooth fascia boards and windowsills. Two sliding shutters can be drawn across the main entrance as required, and the pupils can then use the inset smaller doors which, like the concave roof, take the mind off to another world of castles and secret passages.
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