Inchture Nursery School
Client: Perth & Kinross Council
Project Value: £1.5m
Brief: New-build nursery school within the grounds of existing primary school
Sustainability Initiatives: Air source heat pumps and MVHR, target A-rating on EPC
Inchture is a village situated on the border of rural Perthshire, approximately 9 miles west of Dundee. The proposed site, within the grounds of the existing Inchture Primary, is located within a designated conservation area, and is bounded to the South by a row of giant Redwood trees, planted in 1853 and believed to be the first examples of the species successfully cultivated outside of North America. The nursery school will be single storey with low pitched roofs to reflect the form of the existing school. Overhanging canopies provide solar shading, sheltered external play areas and give the building a modern aesthetic.
The materials have been carefully selected to complement the existing school building and the wider context of Inchture. The proposed red brick mix, with subtle tonal variation, ties in with the existing school and compliments the red sandstone which is used widely throughout the village, including on the Category B-Listed Inchture Parish Church to the South of the site, whilst the grey standing seam roof and cladding echo the colour of traditional slate whilst offering a contemporary approach which is viewed favourably by the planning department.
A simple concept plan form has been developed for the building in an attempt to create a building that is easy to understand and navigate. The two pitched roofs define the spaces within, with ancillary accommodation arranged along the north and east and the main nursery space taking advantage of the southwestern aspect and the views out towards the giant redwoods. The main nursery classroom space opens up to an external play area to the south and glazed curtain walling allows a good degree of visual supervision whilst linking the interior and exterior play areas both visually and physically, by way of doors on both glazed elevations. Entry to the building is along the existing pathway to the school, giving nursery children a sense of integration into the Inchture School Community. Overall, the entire plan is punctuated by natural light through the provision of clerestory windows and glazing to external walls with attractive views to the external environment.