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Haileybury SciTech

Sponsored by
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Location: Hertford

Brick Manufacturer: Forterra PLC

Brick Name: Surrey Hills Red Multi

Architect: Hopkins Architects

Brickwork Contractor: Anglian Brickwork

About the project

SciTech is a new Science and Technology building for Haileybury which reimagines the way science can be taught in schools in the future.

Doubling the School’s previous provision, the new SciTech buildings provide better connectivity between STEM disciplines and contribute to a more collegiate campus environment.

The design integrates new and existing buildings around a courtyard and cloister which serve as active spaces for study, mentoring and exhibitions. The Grade II listed Herbert Baker building bounds one side of the courtyard and sets up an entrance on an axis across the new courtyard to the 1990s Design and Technology building bounding the opposite side. A new Teaching Building containing biology and computational laboratories arranged as a three-storey linear block along a third side of the courtyard formally extends one of the wings of the Baker building. Within it, classrooms at the ends of the block have windows on three sides to maximise daylight and views. The fourth side of the courtyard is formed by a two-storey top lit research block with a butterfly rooflight.

Together the SciTech buildings provide new science laboratories, the latest IT suites, Robotics, Design and Technology facilities, a dedicated Research Centre, inter-connected teaching and seminar spaces, an outdoor courtyard and a geodome greenhouse with pond. The Research Centre is home to pioneering research projects including the prestigious Stan-X, which aims to transform science education in secondary schools. Haileybury is the first school in Europe to participate in Stan-X for which 12 pupils each year will work on university-standard research, alongside scientists at Stanford University and the University of Oxford.

Haileybury features a collection of architecturally significant buildings on its campus, dating from its founding in 1862 to the present day. Many of its most distinguished structures use brick. For SciTech, selecting the correct brick was crucial. Through a meticulous sampling process the design team chose Forterra Surrey Hills Brick in Red Multi. This brick helped the new parts of the SciTech project appear as a seamless extension of the Baker Building, continuing its brick façade along Hailey Lane and knitting the historic, more recent and new elements into an integrated whole. Early engagement with the conservation officer and thorough research into the brick bonds used around the campus ensured that, while the project sits well with its neighbours, it can be read as a distinct and valued 21st century addition to the school’s architectural heritage.

The project includes sustainability features that align with Haileybury’s wider sustainability goals and its aim to become net zero. These include green roofs, ground source heat pumps, photovoltaics and good daylight provision to all spaces. Natural ventilation is supplemented by Mechanical Ventilation with Heat Recovery (MVHR) in the laboratories, served by distinctive ‘hit and miss’ brickwork detailing on the façades. A cross-laminated timber structure with low embodied energy effectively offsets that of the brickwork attached to it, keeping the overall carbon count down whilst maximally benefitting from the heritage, durability, and crafted aesthetic that brick brings.

Sponsored by Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC

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As Britain’s Brick Specialists, Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC unites the best in clay traditions. The Group represents seven of the most recognised premium brands across the UK and Europe: Blockleys, Carlton, Charnwood,, Freshfield Lane, Hathern Terra Cotta and Michelmersh, producing over 125 million handmade and machine-made clay bricks and pavers annually. Using modernised production methods that emphasise sustainable building solutions and adhere to the most stringent production requirements, Michelmersh guarantees high quality product standards with a low ecological footprint.

Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC