Invergarven ASN

An intimate school in a walled garden, Invergarven ASN provides a flexible and secure learning environment with good access to external play for children aged 5-18 of varying needs and abilities.




South Ayrshire Council



The new Invergarven ASN school, located in Girvan, provides a dedicated learning environment for pupils with assisted needs through an age range of 5-18. The building replaces the existing school which is no longer fit for purpose.
The design of the new school will play an important part in the daily lives of the children. A variety of learning environments have been provided to allow for maximum flexibility given the broad range of abilities and ages of the user group. Specialist rebound therapy room, soft play, intimate multi-sensory room and breakout rooms as well as a calming, spa-like Hydrotherapy Pool have been provided to ensure teachers have a range of options for both physical and educational activities.
Security is a key priority for the school but equally so are connections to the outside and creating light, open and engaging environments for learning. The design concept accommodates these aspirations through use of a ‘walled garden’ enclosing the school playground areas and allowing direct access to external play from all classrooms. In addition, intimate internal courtyard spaces punctuate the internal circulation spaces. These spaces allow for direct, secure and supervised external play within the secure fabric of the building, while also creating bright and open circulation and breakout spaces, avoiding narrow corridors.
Subtle use of materials with occasional use of sensory elements allows for a calm and reflective backdrop to school life. A robust brick structure is punctuated by soft and tactile timber cladding to the taller volumes of the gym and pool halls, creating a distinctive roof form and identity for the new school building. Large windows are orientated towards views of Ailsa Craig and the surrounding landscape, with low cills and window seats catering for younger children.

Project gallery

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The Challenge

The key challenge here was to create a school for a variety of ages and abilities that responded to specific needs while being flexible for future generations of pupils. The school has to cater for an age range from infant through to adolescent with a multitude of physical abilities and different learning abilities.

The Solution

We created 3 large, flexible class spaces with good access to accessible and hoist assisted toilets. In addition to these 2 smaller classrooms for one-on-one learning are provided along with dedicated sensory rooms.

The Outcome

A bespoke school with a variety of learning environments that provides secure and engaging spaces for children of varying ages and abilities to grow and develop, while providing staff with much needed spaces of their own.

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