The University of Cambridge Primary School, the first completed building as part of the North West Cambridge Development has been honoured at the Cambridge Design and Construction Awards.  The iconic circular building designed by Marks Barfield Architects with Willmott Dixon as the main contractor was highly commended for the Best Large Building at the annual dinner of the Cambridge Forum for the Construction Industry.

Gavin Heaphy, Construction Director of the North West Cambridge Development said: “The standard across the competition this year was exceptionally high and we are thrilled that the team effort has been recognised by peers within the Cambridge industry. Marks Barfield’s approach to the design brief and collaborative working practice with the University, education experts and across the technical team has resulted in a fantastic school building which is being used to maximum effect, creating a legacy beyond bricks and mortar.  The team is extremely proud that a judging panel of experts have endorsed the quality of the design and construction of the School.” 

The awards judging panel commented:

"The pupils appeared very content in their new surroundings, a curved building with high-quality spaces both internally and externally. The school was deemed worthy of a commendation for design in terms of its organisation of teaching spaces and dedication to learning. The judges were delighted with the joyful building and its rich landscape"

Education and young people are at the heart of the design of the University of Cambridge Primary School.  Its circular form and single-storey building promotes the school’s ethos to be inclusive ambitious and innovative; the non-hierarchical structure allows every voice to be heard. The building is comprised of a series of classroom clusters and learning streets where there are no corridor ends and doors to limit learning or interrupt the children.

The School is the first University Training School at a Primary level in the country and will be a three-form entry school serving the local catchment. 

Richard Murphy Architects won the best new large building award for the Young Street Campus. 5th Studio won the best conservation, alternation or extension award for New Court, Trinity College. Gort Scott was highly commended for their design of 51 Hills Road.

The shortlist for the awards included:

  • New Court, Trinity College, 5th Studio (Winner of the best conservation, alteration or extension);
  • Eccleston Place, Hill;
  • Beth Shalom Synagogue, Cowper Griffith Architects;
  • 51 Hills Road, Gort Scott; (Highly commended)
  • Queens’ College Nursery, Saunders Boston Architects;
  • Crausaz Wordsworth Building, Robinson College, R H Partnership Architects;
  • Young Street Campus for Anglia Ruskin University, Richard Murphy Architects (Winner of the best new large building).

The University of Cambridge Primary School opened in September 2015 to 120 pupils and serves a local catchment. 

Read the Cambridge News write up on their website