Campus Development – The ‘Masterplan’
Throughout the past year, the College has engaged with professional advisors upon the design and generation of a “Masterplan” for the ongoing development, improvement and rationalisation of the site over the next 25 years. In reality, this masterplan process began back in 1856 (when, I note with interest, the boarding fee stood at £100pa!), with the building of Main Hall to replace the existing dining hall. It is somewhat ironic therefore, that 160 years later, one of the key priorities of the project is to find a way to modify the layout of Sir George Gilbert Scott’s design so that we can increase capacity and improve the traffic flow for the diners, whilst preserving the iconic look and feel of that remarkable room.
The bulk of the focus of the most recent construction work has been upon the boarding houses. The extension co Armstrong House welcomed its first occupants at the beginning of this term, whilst the summer break saw the completion of the work to extend and improve the communal spaces on the girls’ side of Faulkner’s and the laying of the foundations for the new wing of Loyd House.
Life in the boarding house lies at the very heart of every Bradfieldian’s time at the College. Considerable thought and effort is being put into a rolling programme to ensure that, over the coming years, the facilities and atmosphere within the houses continue to provide the best possible backdrop for the provision of the experiences and the formation of the friendships that last for lifetimes.
The plan contains interconnected projects that range from the small and mundane to the large and inspirational, encompassing all aspects of the College’s academic, co-curricular and pastoral provision. It will reflect our aim of anticipating the ways in which every strand of the educational process will continue to evolve over the coming years, thus creating a College site that provides the landscape within which future generations of pupils, staff, parents and visitors can thrive, flourish and be inspired to exceed their individual and collective potential.
As one walks around the campus, it is often a healthy (and humbling) experience to recognise that so much of what exists has been made possible by the commitment of so many people to Bradfield College over many decades. Parents, grandparents and guardians have chosen Bradfield and been prepared to meet the spiralling cost of its fees in the knowledge that they were being ploughed into the development of the College.
The generosity of our donors – alumni, parents and friends of the College – has been displayed time and time again in enabling new facilities to emerge from the ground. I genuinely believe that the plans include projects that will inspire the continuation of that tradition of support and generosity, particularly in the spheres of the creation of exciting learning spaces, communal social facilities, sports pavilions and performing arts spaces.
The College looks forward to sharing these visions and plans with the College community over the coming years and to continuing the legacy of the growth and improvement of this unique place that started all those years ago. I just wish they had made that dining room bigger…
Paddy Burrowes, Former Bursar (14 – 18)