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Castle Hill School New Classroom (press release)

17 March 14 Author:Michelle Gaffaney

Straw, earth, wood, stone and Sedum – these will be the main building products used to create Castle Hill School’s new eco–classroom.

Castle Hill School needs more day to day classroom space incorporating a library zone. The space will also be used for their after school clubs, and for cooking activities.

That is when Greenstone Design got involved. Greenstone Design have designed a simple and innovative building with a focus on the materials used and maximising the learning opportunities for the children and the local community. A new indoor space that reflects the ethos of the school and their links to the local community and local groups such as Incredible Edible Todmorden.  A new verandah, incorporating an existing outdoor structure, will provide additional learning space for groups to use outside and somewhere to shelter during playtimes if it is wet.

Michelle, Director of Greenstone Design said:

We are really pleased to be involved in this local project. Many school buildings need considerable refurbishment or extra space for growing numbers of pupils. Castle Hill has already turned unusable space into learning platforms by creating a forest school and growing beds in the playground.  This building will provide much needed creative space for pupils to develop their ideas and also will host after school clubs. We strongly believe that the environment around us directly effects children’s attitudes and their ability to learn and explore ideas.  It is because of this that we want to create beautiful, inspiring learning spaces for local school children and teachers.

Greenstone Design will provide a full design and build service to the school handing over a finished school building ready to move the furniture in and to make it their own. But children and local people will not have to wait until the end of the construction process to find out about the building. Local people will have the opportunity to learn the construction techniques building of cob and straw bales by coming on training courses. Cob will be used to create reading nooks in the library. This is where course participants can let their creative juices flow.

The materials have been chosen to create a super insulated, acoustically sound and healthy building. No toxic materials will be used in the building fabric and every care will be made to keep the local building products source as local to Todmorden as possible. The building will be clad to the rear and side with Larch boards. This will be harvested by local company Black Bark cut from the woods at Hard Castle Crags.

The highest design standards will be met for this new build classroom ensuring a safe and inspiring learning space for our young people.

Pictures and updates about the building will be posted up in the Greenstone Design window on Rochdale Road in the Centre of Todmorden.

If you are interested in attending one of the courses please contact us at [email protected] and ask to be put on the Straw Bale Course mailing list.

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Michelle Gaffaney
Michelle Gaffaney - Architectural Director
With a wealth of experience working on a range of projects, Michelle Gaffaney has a passion for design and strong relationships with her clients. Connect with Michelle on LinkedIn