Wessex Wing at The Ladies College
Nominated for a Guernsey Design Award, the new Wessex Wing at The Ladies College was part of a phased redevelopment of the College site.
The Guernsey Design Awards promote distinctive, original, inspirational and sustainable design of the built environment in Guernsey. Sponsored by Norman Piette and developed by the States of Guernsey Service, Norman Piette and The Guernsey Society of Architects, in association with RIBA, the Guernsey Design Awards seek to recognise the exemplary work that enhances the built environment.
Commenting on their nomination Andrew Male from Lovell Ozanne, the architects behind the project said: “Lovell Ozanne are delighted that the project has been shortlisted. A lot of work has gone into this project and I hope it is worthy of further consideration. Overall we are very pleased and proud of what has been achieved.”
The key objectives of the project were:
- To replace numerous porta cabin classrooms that had been in existence for over 30 years, with 8 new classrooms and smaller teaching spaces.
- Provide a dedicated music department with practice rooms.
- Provide a new Learning resource Centre.
- New catering and dining facilities.
- Improve accessibility for all to as much of the senior school as possible.
- Improve the external appearance and parking with better management of cars.
- Improve the entrance and reception areas.
- The scheme had to be cost effective and allow the school to function during the construction process.
R G Falla were appointed after a two stage tender process using a traditional JCT contract and after some enabling works were completed during 2016, the main work commenced in July 2015. The project had to be carefully programmed to ensure the most disruptive activities such as piling were complete during college holidays.
“We worked with the college for about a year before we started on site as part of the pre—planning design stage, looking at different ways of achieving the optimum solution. It was about working with a number of constraints to come up with a solution that would work in terms of budget and operational needs and then working with planning to find a way to get it all to work together, “said Andrew. “We also had to ensure that the design could work from a phased point of view so that the school could stay open.”
The new building met the functional objectives set out above and has unified many aspects of the College, not only as a building but as a community all under one roof. All works were delivered to the highest quality, including the limestone façade work on the existing entrance, which was delivered by Granite Le Pelley Ltd.
The works have made huge improvements regarding energy efficiency with well insulated premises using air source heat pumps for heating. The use of levels, ramps and lifts has made the majority of the senior school fully accessible to wheelchairs.
Andrew said: “The College seem to be very pleased with the way it has all worked out and the students really seem to be enjoying it.”
The project was completed on time on 6th September 2016 within its budget of about £5.7 million.
Andrew concluded: “I have thoroughly enjoyed this project because it has been so good to work with a very positive project team that have worked together to deliver a successful project and to be shortlisted for the Guernsey Design Awards is a credit to the achievements of that team.”