St. Mary's Nursery

London. 1996

  • Project Details
  • Completion: 1996
  • Cost: £220,000
  • Clients: The Roman Catholic Diocese of Westminster

The commission for St Mary’s Nursery School in Kilburn – only the second fully in-the-round building by the practice – was the consequence of a simple but determined chain of events involving two modest pieces of internal design and a pile of correspondence. A carefully crafted plan (involving the elimination of corridor spaces), strongly edited views (including children-sized windows) and a limited number of sculpted elements combine to create a secure and colourful place for the very young. The self-contained building turns away from the rest of the school, opening out onto a covered outdoor play area and secluded secret garden. Forming part of a wider project to refurbish and renovate the existing Junior and Infants School, the new nursery accommodates 26 full-time-equivalent children.