Emma Darwin Boarding House, Shrewsbury School

A new contemporary student residence drawing on the best of local detail and modern construction techniques, providing an inspirational and practical base for the young woman of Shrewsbury School.

Following the introduction of 6th form girls in 2008, Shrewsbury School appointed Brock Carmichael Architects to design a new girls boarding house to meet the growing demand from prospective female Sixth formers. The new facility will provide high quality living accommodation for 60 students in a mixture of 1 and 2 person bedrooms, along with family accommodation for two resident pastoral care providers, breakout spaces, a main hall and a student music room.

The building is set within a conservation area in a prominent wooded location. The design has 2 distinctive aspects – a private secure quadrangle and a public presence facing an important entrance vista. The building reinterprets the local vernacular in a contemporary manner to provide a rich and articulated façade with projecting bays, clerestory windows, dormers and a small ‘cloister’. All entrances and access routes are visible, monitored and within secured areas. The building has under floor heating throughout, grey water recycling and is prepared to receive a roof mounted photovoltaic array. The interior layout has been designed to be flexible to allow summer vacation conversion to provide traditional dormitory accommodation for lower 11-15 year old boys. This allows the school to cope with changes in market demand and ‘lumpy’ intakes.