New school facility for 700 pupils following five years’ preparation

Westholme School

Lancaster Chartered Architects, HPA, has completed the redevelopment of a school facility following five years of preparation.

HPA was appointed in 2017 to deliver the co-educational day school at Pleasington-based Westholme School.

It undertook three years of feasibility studies that concluded that all 700 pupils across Westholme Prep and Seniors could be housed on one single campus, through the repurposing and refurbishment of its Wilmar Lodge site.

The plans, which were granted permission by Blackburn & Darwen Council in 2020, included incorporating and repurposing two existing buildings to create the new Prep on the Senior site.

HPA’s design for the new single campus school brings together the two buildings with a new first floor extension to form a new Primary school for its 200 Infant and Junior school pupils.

The relocation of the Infant and Junior schools on to the Wilmar Lodge site will create efficiencies for Westholme School, while bringing the students together to create a new sense of community and by improving the shared facilities, which include an additional outdoor learning area, along with new recreational playground, and upgraded library and hall space.

Helen Madin, senior architect at HPA, said: “It’s fantastic to see the culmination of five years of work to bring the pupils of Westholme School together on one single campus with improved educational and recreational facilities.

“The aim of this project was to create a more efficient site for Westholme School, and by repurposing and utilising their existing building assets into our plan, we have been able to do this while also reducing the environmental impact of the new facilities.”

Dr Robson, principal at Westholme School, said: “For 100 years, our PREP community has wholeheartedly empowered our youngest Westholmians to exceed their potential.

“Today, our brand new PREP building, nestled in the heart of our beautiful rural Wilmar Lodge setting, ensures every PREP pupil enjoys a refreshingly different approach to their educational beginnings now benefitting every day from our exceptional resources and facilities.

“Our unique philosophy at Westholme is rooted in the acquisition of the essential 21st century skills vital for the rapidly-evolving modern workplace – and this starts from the very youngest aged four years old. It is a very different approach to education.”

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