Projects
Passmores Academy

Formulated around a radial plan, Passmores Academy was built with a heartspace of communal areas at the centre, with adjoining faculty wings radiating outwards.

Client Essex County Council

Location Essex, UK

Status Built

Awards

2011 World Architecture Award Finalist


 

Passmores Academy

Passmores Academy, completed in 2011 for Essex County Council, accommodates 1,200 students in six learning areas. Formulated around a radial plan, it was built with a communal gathering area or ‘heartspace’ at the centre, which comprises the assembly hall, dining, library and inclusion faculties, from which the rest of the school and adjoining faculty wings radiate outwards. The heartspace design enables passive supervision throughout the school, which has had a marked impact on student behaviour, and provides a centralised zone for interaction and engagement.

The ‘inclusion faculty’ in the heartspace provides learning and support to all at the academy. Built around a circular model, with rooms for mentors and academic coaches arranged around a rotund break-out area, the inclusion faculty is placed at the centre of the school. This ensures that pastoral support is accessible and visible to all, and being elevated allows for a calm, harmonious environment for talking and learning.

The naturally-ventilated building uses biomass boilers as part of its heat source, and incorporates night-time cooling and a brown roof. Both sustainable and contextual, the building is clad predominantly in timber.

The scheme was classed by the Essex Design Initiative as an ‘Exemplar’ project. Passmores was recognised by Ofsted as ‘Outstanding’ and by the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust as within the top 100 performing specialist schools, and in the top 1% of all schools nationally for value added.

'You have produced a stunning design. Thank you for taking the time to get to know us and for delivering something we can all be proud of.'

Vic Goddard, Head Teacher.

Passmores Academy
Passmores Academy
Passmores Academy
Passmores Academy
Passmores Academy
Passmores Academy
Passmores Academy