New Dining Halls, Northwood Preparatory School

Having carried out a variety of projects for Northwood Preparatory School, Merchant Taylor’s School and St John’s School since 2000, Counter & King were asked to design and obtain planning permission for a new Dining, Kitchen and Meeting facility at Northwood Prep (now Merchant Taylor’s Prep).

Permission was obtained for an infill building of 6000 square feet.

The campus is located within the Green Belt and the building is situated adjacent to listed barn buildings. The site is in an area of archaeological importance. A substantial but discreet and sensitive addition was required.

A small linear garden has been created, in order to separate the new building from the existing classroom spaces and to ensure that the classrooms themselves are not deprived of light.

Glazed link buildings enable pupils and staff of the Junior and Senior Schools to access the new hall internally, thereby joining the two.

A material palette of stock brickwork, clay tile, stained timber boarding, windows and doors ensures that the new building sits comfortably alongside existing buildings, at the same time as making a statement as a core facility within the School.

The new facility enables lunch to be served to all pupils and staff in a maximum of two sittings.

The space is flooded with light from all angles and fulfils a multi-use purpose, enhancing the all-round excellence of the boys’ educational experience.