Precincts Projects for The King's School, Canterbury

Untangling a challenging knot of projects within the historic precincts of Canterbury Cathedral

Walters & Cohen was commissioned by The King’s School to resolve two challenges on their site: to modernise and co-locate science facilities, and to increase dining provision. We undertook a space audit of the school’s teaching accommodation within the historic buildings of the Precincts of Canterbury Cathedral to explore how to offer better configurations of space and fit-for-purpose classrooms. This resulted in a number of projects, including two key areas of improvement:

Mint Yard

Science teaching accommodation will be located around an area of the Precincts called Mint Yard, which sits just within the City Wall and is characterised by Grade I and Grade II listed buildings. Our proposal demolishes a ‘70s day house (the occupants moved to the new Mitchinson’s, completed in 2018), replacing it with a new building containing high quality, state-of-the-art science labs and a lecture hall. This links to existing science accommodation in the Grade II listed Parry Hall, creating departmental clarity, while the maths department will take over existing physics labs. Clad in flint and with a gabled roof, the new building knits in seamlessly with its neighbours and is an elegant addition to this highly sensitive site.


Dining currently takes place in a Grade I listed formal hall at first floor level, overlooking Green Court and the Cathedral. Our design reconfigures the ground floor to create an informal café in a space currently occupied by services and kitchens; this makes the most of views to the Cathedral and gives pupils more choice of venue at lunchtimes. The student social centre below Shirley Hall has also been remodelled to create informal dining, a social space, careers centre and IT lab.

In addition to works to listed buildings, the site also has multiple historic designations including Scheduled Ancient Monument, Conservation Area, Area of Archaeological Importance, and World Heritage Site.


ClientThe King's School, Canterbury

Total valueConfidential

CompletionSep 2020

Area3545 m2 (refurb) and 855 m2 (new build)


Structural engineerPrice & Myers

Building ServicesSkelly & Couch

LandscapeBradley-Hole Schoenaich Landscape

Planning consultantHobbs Parker Property Consultants

Heritage consultantTurley

Project managerFanshawe

AcousticsPace Acoustics

ContractorConiston Ltd