Alfreton Park SEN School - Highfield Plantation

  • Learning

Alfreton Park is a special educational needs and disabilities all-through school, in which all pupils and staff strive to create a secure, welcoming and inclusive learning environment. The site is located close to a cluster of buildings and institutions that provide care to people of Derbyshire with Special Needs, forming a campus-like family of nurturing buildings within a park setting.

From its raised position on the natural ridge of land running down the centre of the tree-lined site, the low-lying, contextual building blends into the landscape through following the natural contours of the site and using subtly coloured treated zinc cladding.

A simple and efficient single storey pitched roof section is used throughout, a generator for elegance in its setting, creating open and light internal spaces for activities ranging from trampolining to physiotherapy. Each classroom has sheltered play space, and carefully placed internal classroom screens allow consistent views to the tree-lined parkland surrounds. These design decisions endeavour to provide an enriching learning environment connecting the pupils to nature.