Hornsby House Educational Trust

Lead Architect

James Dinwiddie

Construction Cost

£2 million


Completed June 2010

Site Area / Building Area

3,675sqm / 490sqm

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The Lime Tree Building, Hornsby House School, Balham, London SW12

The building occupies an awkwardly shaped corner site previously used for temporary accommodation. In order to minimise the bulk of the new building in this mainly residential area, the lower floor is constructed below the playground, thus ensuring that only the roof projects above the new boundary wall. The need to retain a Lime protected by a TPO and the close proximity of the existing Lower School building added to the complexity of both the design and the construction process.

The design is conceived as a simple L-shaped building at ground floor level, with the stainless steel roof articulated above the brick boundary wall by a separating band of frameless glass. The L-shape creates an inner garden beside the Lime. The ground floor provides three classrooms and a small office. Below ground level, the building extends far out below the playground to provide a large dining and flexible performance space, together with a full commercial kitchen.