Balcarras Music School

RRA Architects > Balcarras Music School
  • As part of RRA's ongoing program of Corporate Social Responsibility our services were provided to The Music School project at cost, along with the associated consultant & construction teams.
  • Status: 2018
  • Location: Charlton Kings, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire
  • Value: Undisclosed
  • Contractor: Dowdeswell Estates Building Contractors
  • Structural Engineer: Hartfield Consultants
  • Photo Credit: Tom Hatcher and RRA Architects
  • Acoustic Engineer: Paragon Acoustics Consultants
  • M&E Consultant: Environmental Engineering Partnership
  • Categories: Education
  • Tags: Acoustics, Cheltenham, Education, Gloucestershire, Gloucestershire Employment, School, Timber Cladding

The Music School is the result of a close working collaboration between RRA, Balcarras School and Cheltenham based construction firm, Dowdeswell Estates. The scheme expanded the existing music department to deliver dedicated teaching, rehearsal & performance spaces.

A key part of the design approach was to prioritise a simplicity in form, whilst integrating subtle details to maximise the buildings’ aspirational potential. This was an important factor considering the overall budgetary constraints. Therefore, the design ensured the majority of the building elements would be suited to pre-fabrication allowing rapid on site construction.

The resultant flat roofed extension above the existing ground floor enabled a generous internal arrangement of space. This facilitated a dual function for both teaching and recital. The verticality of the ‘rhythmic’ façade is a reference to musical patterns and that of the daily cycle. The idea of this being that varied shadows will be cast across the building throughout the school day.

Along with fund raising by the school pupils, teachers and parents. Balcarras School received a substantial donation from local benefactor, Julian Dunkerton, to help fund the project .

RRA, along with the associated consultant & construction teams, also carried out works at cost in order to enable the project to be realised.