Ryde School

New entrance building provides a smart first impression

In 2008 Walters & Cohen won a competition to design a new entrance building and provide a masterplan for Ryde School on the Isle of Wight. A space audit of Ryde’s campus established the brief to extend accommodation and provide a new reception, generous art and D&T facilities, dining hall and kitchen. The main entrance was provided by the Grade II listed Westmont building, which suffered heavy congestion as a parking and drop-off area.

Our vision for the new entrance building was one of elegance and simplicity. It is a foil to the prominent Westmont building, yet striking and grand in its own right as the first impression of the school. The two-storey L-shaped building encloses a landscaped courtyard in front of Westmont that is well used as a thoroughfare and social space, especially for whole-school gatherings in the summer. The building draws inspiration from its context, maximising the long views over the Solent and evoking a sense of serenity.

The new building was opened by HRH The Earl of Wessex on 23 March 2012. The project won an RIBA South Regional Award in 2013 and the Solent Design Award for Quality Places in 2014.


2014Solent Design Awards, Quality Places Award

2013RIBA South Awards


ClientRyde School

Total value£5.5m

CompletionDec 2011

QSHolloway Squire Partnership

ContractorStoneham Construction

Structural engineerTari Willis Associates

Building ServicesSkelly & Couch

LandscapeWalters & Cohen

Planning consultantTerence O'Rourke