Michael Baker Boathouse, The King’s School, Worcester

  • Architect: Associated Architects, Birmingham

Replacing a small 1950’s building, unsightly and suffering long term flood damage, the striking prow-shaped building is a key element of the school’s 10 year development masterplan. 

On the line of the old city defences, the building is at the edge of the historic city core and provides a striking modern contrast to the area’s rich Roman and medieval archaeology.

The lightweight upper floor of the unique two storey structure is constructed in the shape of a boat cloaked in Chestnut timber laths.The laths are set at an angle to enhance the dynamic form of the building and will weather down to a natural silver-grey colour in keeping with the sensitive historic context.

By contrast, the ground floor, extended by 60% to house the School’s considerable fleet of rowing boats and sculls, is constructed in robust solid brickwork to withstand regular flooding. Growing out from the line of the historic brick embankment, the new outer retaining wall is constructed in 440mm long Linear bricks to reflect the elegant elongated form of the building.

Ibstock created a unique rustic brick blend for the building to marry with the existingVictorian brickwork and local sandstone. Laid in English Garden Wall Bond with three courses of Linear double length stretchers and one course headers, the design complements
the diagonal siding above. Internally, Linear bricks built three courses quarter bond with every fourth course headers, create a distinctive canvas. 

The new outer retaining wall is constructed in 440mm long Linear bricks to reflect the elegant elongated form of the building.

Stephen Townsend, Project Architect Associated Architects 

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