Central to Oundle School’s “modern, thoughtful vision of sport”, the new £24m Sports Centre delivers “maximum flexibility in the provision of sport and physical wellbeing activities”, while “enhancing the experience of all users including visitors”. The centrepiece of the “multi-faceted, multi-functional sports development” is a six-lane, 50m swimming pool that is divisible into two pools through the use of a submersible boom. A floating floor optimises the pool’s flexibility further. An eight-court hall offering retractable bleacher seating, adaptable playing spaces, a separate 70-station air conditioned fitness suite, a dedicated dance studio, and three further multipurpose studios, provide Oundle with the high-calibre sporting facilities that reflect its reputation as “one of Britain’s leading co-educational and day schools”.
The new Sports Centre is a key resource in Oundle School’s promotion of a “positive development environment” with an “inclusive and lifelong participation focus”. Handed over in July 2020, we finalised the remaining demolition / decommissioning and external landscaping (designed by PRP) in September. The majority of the project, which was designed by Saunders Boston, was constructed using CLT panels. This pre-fabricated solution not only provided a high quality finish but also ensured programme certainty.
Once the initial site set-up works were complete, our construction methodology progressed simultaneously on two fronts. First, the pool hall excavation and commencement of waterproof concrete works took place, and, in parallel (secondly), the adjacent plantroom and balance tank requirements, plus the waterproof concrete works commenced. Once the new ground floor slab was formed, the focus centred on the formation of the new CLT frame, which was erected on a Just in Time delivery basis with immediate weather protection implemented to protect the frame against water damage. Externally, as the CLT was erected and handed over in sections, our teams began the façade finishes in a sequential manner, closing the building elevation by elevation.
“The Sports MasterPlan gives us a rare opportunity to resource a modern, thoughtful vision of sport as part of an education which informs our pupils’ lives long after they have left.”