Artist’s impressions of the proposed new science building at Sevenoaks School
A great development is on the cards in Europe. Thanks to a multimillion-pound project set to be completed in 2018, SEVENOAKS is destined to become a home to some of the most advanced school science facilities in Europe.
At an estimated cost of £32 million ($50M), the new science and technology centre will be jointly built with a new Sixth Form Centre at the Sevenoaks school.
With a splendid 20 state-of-the-art science laboratories, the centre will be full of the latest equipment including a digital data logging suite, as well as technology spaces with 3D printing, laser cutting, and digital manufacturing machines.
The three-level roof lit workshop arranged around a central atrium describes its design and has the intention of “encouraging investigation, discovery and experimentation”.
SLEEK: Artist’s impressions of the proposed new science building at Sevenoaks School
Tim Ronalds Architects says the centre will be highly sustainable and have the “life of the building on display, in showcases, digital displays and suspended exhibits”.
In the meanwhile, all of the school’s current facilities will be brought under one roof with the Sixth Form centre including a café, study spaces and a new home for the higher education department.
RELAX: How the cafe at the new Sixth Form centre proposed for Sevenoaks School will look
In 2005, the school identified the need for these facilities and went out to tender last month to find a builder for the 7,000 sq m development. The school is raising the fund from the money saved up, together with bank loans and a remaining £10M ($15M) to be raised from donors.
The campaign to reach the target was recently launched at the Royal Institution with a keynote address from Astronomer Royal, Lord Rees.
And the bursar, Andrew Burton, says there is a desire to put the High Street school “at the very forefront of science and technology teaching”.
THE FUTURE: An external view of the new science and technology centre and new Sixth Form centre
He said of the new centre: “It will be cutting edge, and we think it will be one of the best science and technology centres in the UK, if not Europe. We’re bringing our facilities together for all the STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), but it won’t just be our students who will benefit. The school already has its science week, but our intention is to amplify our outreach work, making this a facility for children in the wider community.
We want to make the centre a science destination for key speakers and lecturers and the sub-basement will be a multi-purpose space with seats so we’ll be able to put events on there. In addition, we can assist local primary schools which need help in STEM subjects to meet the requirements of the curriculum.
For instance, with coding, most primary teachers don’t have the skillset necessary, so we’ll be able to help teachers in the community by inviting them here, and this building makes that easier.”