Faith Schools’ Joint Campus / BDP


© David Barbour

© David Barbour
  • Architects: BDP
  • Location: Newton Mearns, Glasgow, United Kingdom
  • Project Manager: Gardiner & Theobald
  • Area: 5920.0 m2
  • Project Year: 2017
  • Photographs: David Barbour
  • Structural Engineer: Blyth & Blyth
  • M&E Engineer: TUV SUD
  • Landscape Architect: BDP
  • Acoustic Consultant: Sandy Brown Associates
  • Fire Engineer: Jeremy Gardner Associates
  • Main Contractor: Heron Brothers Construction
  • Client: East Renfrewshire Council

© David Barbour

© David Barbour

Text description provided by the architects. Located to the Southwest of Glasgow the Faith Schools’ Joint Campus is the first known shared Catholic and Jewish faith campus in Europe with an associated non-denominational nursery. The given brief asked the Architect to create a primary school which respects and nurtures young people’s individual religious faiths whilst delivering inspiring spaces for learning, teaching, and social integration. A series of extensive consultation and interactive engagement with Pupils, Staff, Parents, Education and Faith Leaders was paramount in understanding concerns, challenging convention and establishing a shared vision. This resulted in an innovative shared hub at the heart of the new campus – strategically located between denominational zones.


© David Barbour

© David Barbour

This ‘heartspace’ contains a wealth of interactive activity including performance, drama, music, science, technology, library, art and importantly storytelling. Moreover, it features the artwork created by pupils and art teacher during the collaborative workshop sessions to establish togetherness and promote further collaborations between schools. Each classroom has a dedicated space for flexible learning and group work and is enriched by long views of the countryside. The teaching space extends outside the classrooms and is designed to avoid a sense of enclosure whilst being filled with natural light. Mood lighting is vital and varied from the diminutive “wall-pocket” snugs to the dramatic halo of natural light and the surprise “sky of tiny stars”- created by the fibre optic lights in the feature timber ceiling of the central atrium.


© David Barbour

© David Barbour

© David Barbour

© David Barbour

Located on an urban edge with expansive views over the southerly Scottish countryside the landscape strategy intertwines the site’s geological and cultural history. An archaeological dig uncovered an 18th Century farmstead and the stone was salvaged to create a meeting place in the entrance plaza with pottery shards and reclaimed artefacts incorporated into low walls representing the historical buildings. The stone from the quarry adjacent to the site was used to create an igneous wall which incorporates bouldering, seating, chalkboards and plays spaces. The building has an overcoat of weathered zinc, glass, western red cedar and copper coloured portals, whilst the white interiors are bathed in natural light with the selective use of glass and timber.


© David Barbour

© David Barbour

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