- Why does the school need to do this?
In the 1960s when the PE Centre was built, Winchester College was home to 550 boys, with limited sports on offer. Today the school has up to 700 boys and offers a diverse range of nearly 30 sports. The school also opens its doors to the local community where a wide variety of members, clubs and societies enjoy the facilities on offer. Increased activity places an insurmountable demand on an ageing PE Centre which also presents long-term maintenance difficulties. The redevelopment of the site to create a state-of-the-art Sports Centre will allow all of the boys to enjoy and participate in a variety of sports, enable the most talented and driven boys to practice and compete at the highest level and provide much improved facilities for the community to enjoy.
- Will this all be built at the same time?
The primary objective is to provide the new Sports Centre. Clearance of the site will also require the creation of the new Support Services Building to replace buildings lost in the process. The redevelopment of the Sanatorium and Design & Technology building will follow on thereafter.
- When do you hope to start building?
The school expects the development to take place in two main phases. Phase 1 is expected to take place between Summer 2018 – Summer 2019, and include construction of the Support Services Building followed by the construction of temporary sports facilities on Kingsgate Park. Phase 2 is expected to begin in Summer 2019 and include the demolition of the existing PE Centre and construction and fit-out of the Sports Centre. Opening of the new Sports Centre is expected to take place in early 2022.
- How long will it take?
The project will take around three and a half years in total, with the work on the new Sports Centre taking approximately two and a half years.
- What will happen to sport at Winchester College during this period?
Temporary facilities will be constructed on Kingsgate Park to provide as much sport for pupils on campus as possible. This will be supplemented by use of off-campus facilities.
- Will sports facilities be available to members of the Wykeham Sports Club during the build?
Community use of the existing PE Centre will continue until Summer 2019 and the school looks forward to welcoming the public to use the new state-of-the-art Sports Centre when it opens in 2022. Further detail on possible community access to the temporary provisions will be updated here in due course.
- Will special provision be made to support Club membership?
Wykeham Sports Club members will be able to enjoy the enhanced facilities provided by the redevelopment. There will be a larger sports hall with more cardio-vascular equipment and weights, more squash and fives courts, and a multifunctional fitness studio.
- Is the parking area going to be floodlit?
There will be amenity lighting, but it is not intended to floodlight the area.
- Will the work be noisy and dusty?
Inevitably there will be some disturbance during the construction, but the contractors engaged will be expected to work closely with all neighbours and other stakeholders to minimise the impact of their work.
- How will the contractor access the site?
The contractor’s primary access will be off Norman Road, but some access off Kingsgate St via the existing PE Centre and Works Dept accesses is also likely.
- Will traffic be made worse on Norman Road as a result of the project?
With the amount of parking spaces on site similar to those currently provided, we do not anticipate that, once completed, the overall traffic movements to the site will be significantly different.
- The buildings come very close to some neighbouring properties, can this be avoided?
The school’s architects have worked hard to minimise the impact of the new buildings on the immediate neighbours. The new siting of the Support Services Building, which will largely be active only during normal working hours, shelters properties to the west from the traffic movement in the car park. Boundaries to the east will also be designed with similar objectives in mind.
- Cannot the school share in the city council’s sports centre development?
Winchester College pupils board full time and in addition to having ready access to facilities for recreational use, the school day cannot afford the time for boys to travel off site for PE and swimming lessons. Furthermore, there are not sufficient facilities in Winchester to meet the current demands of the school.
- Will local traffic routes be affected during the construction phase?
The school does not expect any significant disruption to traffic routes, although there may be some short-term road closures to enable new utility services to be brought onto the site.
- Will the street parking bays be affected by the construction phase?
Only the parking bays that lie directly in front of the new entrance on Norman Road will be lost. The others will be unaffected.
- Wouldn’t it be possible to build new sports facilities nearer the edge of campus/on a field site, rather than increasing the density here and thereby avoiding impact on nearby residential areas?
The Campus Conservation & Development Plan, which was published in 2010 and can be viewed on the school’s website, identified this site as the least constrained and most suitable for significant redevelopment. Other sites in the school’s ownership are very much more heavily constrained by statutory designations.
- When the new PE Centre opens, will there be more access for local residents / organisations / other schools?
It is anticipated that the public, through Club membership, and external organisations and other schools, will be able to use the facilities.
- Is the design ‘environmentally friendly’?
The redevelopment is taking account of flood risk and other environmental factors both in its design and its construction. This includes ensuring that the buildings are well insulated, have plenty of natural light, solar panels and that the Support Services Building will be both modern and efficient.
- How will you fund the Development?
The project has been planned for over many years. The total cost, including inflation, fees, and temporary facilities, will be £50 million. As with all projects of this size, it will be financed by a mixture of borrowing, the school’s own funds and fundraising.