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“Inspirational” and “Aspirational” are just two words used to describe phase one of the new Plymouth School of Creative Arts, a through school for pupils aged 4 to 16. In the past two decades research into “physical learning environments” has progressed significantly. Work by the OECD, UNESCO and others have demonstrated that whilst pedagogical methodology has developed substantially, new concepts in building designs are also required (OECD 2011).

Just as the most forward looking and dynamic companies now employ flexible working spaces to meet differing roles, so the diversity of interactive, reflective and creative learning also requires new spaces. It is in creating such an innovative learning environment that pioneering architects Fielden Clegg Bradley has created a truly imaginative design in Plymouth.

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Project details

Internally, large studio classrooms, specialist spaces for performance, a food hall, theatre, dance studio, recording studio all enhance the creative concepts. These spaces are supported by science and design laboratories each encouraging the learner’s inquiring instincts rather than being passive recipients of dry information.

We quote from the school’s own materials. Jo, a parent said, “The new building is bright and airy with a warm, friendly atmosphere. There is a feeling of new and exciting possibilities here”, and Charlie, a year 7 pupil said, “It’s exciting to start learning in all the different spaces, especially the recording studios. It’s a gigantic building and the food hall reminds me of the great hall in Harry Potter”

In addition to homing specialist creative arts facilities, the building also includes a four-court sports hall and free-flow outdoor learning spaces for the youngest pupils, together with zoned play areas in the landscaped grounds. With a capacity for up to 1020 pupils, Plymouth School of Creative Art is located on an inner city brownfield site and sponsored by Plymouth College of Art.


Location Plymouth
Architect Fielden Clegg Bradley Studios
Installer Progressive Systems
System Vieo
Material Colorcoat Prisma
Colours Flame Red

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