Chilton Trinity School in Bridgwater Completes


Chilton Trinity, the new school in Bridgwater, constructed by BAM, with design and planning by International design practice Scott Brownrigg, has successfully completed the second construction phase; 1,050 pupils moved into the new school in mid-November 2012.

Scott Brownrigg and BAM Construction successfully secured ‘Preferred Bidder’ status in April 2010. 

Neil MacOmish, Group Director at Scott Brownrigg said of the completion: “We are delighted to have been associated with the successful completion of this project. Together with the Local Authority and BAM, we have worked to deliver a new school which we really hope and believe will in turn deliver the transformational educational agenda, as well as be a new beacon for the local community.

The design, layout and organising principles have been driven directly by those parts of the brief, as well as a clear response to context and the desire to create a real sense of place. The clarity and legibility of the organisation of the federations and key functions generate spaces we hope inspire and elevate the general experience of the visitor, teaching staff, students and future generations alike.”

On moving into the new school, Head teacher Lesley Greenway said: “I am very pleased to report that we moved into our new school building at the start of November and all our students and staff were very excited. “Wow”, “Amazing” and “Just like a college” were just some of the comments made by students on their first day.  We are extremely fortunate to have this state-of-the-art learning facility which we know will impact positively on all of our students”.

Early engagement with both the school and community through a programme of consultations enabled the design team to exceed the school’s visions and ensure its early ownership.

The concept revolves around a ‘hive’ at the heart of the school which acts as a beacon to the community and a way-finding reference around the school. The school is separated into teaching federations that plug into the central heart space, allowing the school to function in a number of ways by creating spaces that can be used as individual house or key stage bases and be adapted to provide a variety of teaching and pastoral environments.

Corridors have been avoided with the space reused to provide informal breakout areas that encourage and enhance transformational teaching methods through feature seating and diverse furniture types. Passive supervision is promoted throughout the school with clear sight lines and vision panels creating open and secure teaching environments.

The building goes beyond the minimal standards for environmental performance, with horizontal shading on the south facing façades controls solar gain during the summer months whilst vertical shading on east and west facades prevents glare from the low winter sun.

The glazed entrance contains the unique, curved form of the hive – a central, multi-functional venue – with the veneer clad performance hall adjacent to it creating a distinct façade that is instantly recognisable. Public art has been incorporated within the elevation and paving and provides a backdrop to the  public square and landscaping in front of the building, which can be used for local community use and activities without interfering with the school. The landscaping continues around the building, providing social spaces for the pupils during breaks as well as dedicated areas for external teaching.

The connected sports and leisure facilities, available for both school and community use, include a 25 metre swimming pool, a four court sports hall, gymnasium, fitness studio, grass pitches and a multi-use games area. The pool is due to be completed in February 2013.BAM’s facilities management business will run services at the schools for 25 years under the funding arrangement established with Futures for Somerset. The new school has state-of-the-art building management systems to enable FM to minimise the carbon footprint and take advantage of the greener energy sources, including use of wood chip fuel, solar panels and natural ventilation.

The services include: building management, security, pest control, grounds maintenance, waste, caretaking, cleaning and catering.