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Type: Phased refurbishment and new build development of a special needs school.
A New Music School Wing , Art class facility, Community Hall
Client : Brent Knoll School and London Borough of Lewisham
Contractors : Changing Rooms Block - JEM Building Contractors
Music School Wing - JJ McGinley & Sons
Art Room Facility - JEM Building Contractors
Contract Type : JCT Intermediate
Project Value Built Work CPI:
Changing Rooms Block £ 200,000.00
Music Scholl £1,200,000.00
Art Room Facility £750,000.00

Brent Knoll School, in Sydenham, is a special needs school, originally catering specifically for pupils with autism, and now increasing its remit to include children with further behavioural or educational special needs. The existing school was built in 1965 and designed by Local Authority Architects. Composed of exposed concrete beams and infill brick organised around an intimately scaled entrance courtyard.

In 2002, the London Borough of Lewisham initiated a programme of works to enable the school to modernise and extend certain key facilities. They commissioned a feasibility to determine a strategic incremental plan of where and how the school might adjust and expand its activities. This enabled an evolving framework for developing the future of the school. The feasibility set out to work with the inherent qualities that existed both in the layout and fabric of the building but also working with the existing interests and interactions that existed amongst staff and pupils. Therapy, particularly music therapy, had become an important component of the life of the school and it became very clear that there was a will to build a new music wing.

Currently there have been three phases of work carried out. Phase one involved redesigning the WCs and changing rooms; phase two was the construction of a new Music School  Wing; and phase three the extension of the existing Art room. There are further phases planned for the reorganisation of the administrative hub; the extension of early years centre; the extension of the IT suite.

The headteacher also commissioned a feasibility study for  a new building envisaged as Brent Knoll Community Hall . A study has been carried out to provide a community hall facility acting as an interface between the protected use of the school children and staff but also offering wrap around facilities  space to community activity for bookable events. This building is intended to give the school  a public presence edging the public road.