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Facilities and development projects

We wish to provide our pupils with the very best facilities. In recent years, St John’s has undertaken a number of significant projects for innovative new developments, as well as to renovate and revitalise older parts of the School. These projects are detailed below along with our confirmed plans for the next two years.

These ongoing developments are not only exciting, but stand as testament to our ambition and vision to offer the best possible environment for our boys and girls.

Lower School

In 2016 the ground floor of East House, in one of the School’s original Victorian buildings, was completely refurbished to create the new Lower School. With its own entrance and reception, and inner connections to the main school, the St John’s Lower School offers our younger pupils the chance to feel fully involved in school life, whilst providing them with the comfort of their own community within the School.

Comprising a large open-plan common room and garden room along the whole of the back of the wing, the Lower School looks out onto a large new landscaped garden which was created especially for our youngest pupils. There is also a multimedia room and quiet study area along with new changing rooms.

Sports Facilities

The School has drawn up exciting plans for new indoor sports facilities. This will replace the existing swimming pool with a new competition-standard six lane, 25m pool and a dance studio. FaulknerBrowns Architects, one of the foremost architectural practices for the design of sports buildings and swimming pools in the country, have been appointed and the School will be applying for planning permission very soon. We hope to start work in July 2017 for completion at the end of 2018.

Plans are also underway to give the cricket pavilion a new lease of life and to refurbish it as a memorial tribute to Chris Tongue, the highly respected former headmaster of the School and great cricket enthusiast. The plans include significant modernisation of the upstairs bar and social area, improved heating and changing facilities, allowing the pavilion to be used all year round, and enhanced viewing for spectators.

Academic Facilities

We are immensely proud of our new Science Centre, which opened in November 2015. Providing eight new state-of-the-art biology and chemistry laboratories, the building's innovative design engages and stimulates pupils, motivating them to explore the sciences through experimentation, study, research and discussion.

The first phase of the refurbishment of the Hamilton building was completed in 2016, with the next phases scheduled to take place in the summer of 2017. New glazed openings have been formed between the corridors and the classrooms to create more light and teaching walls with 65” LED touchscreens. Bespoke wall art in the corridors features a series of images from around the School.

School Life

In September 2013, Gloucester House opened as a new girls’ day and weekly boarding house, and was opened by the School’s patron, HRH The Duchess of Gloucester.

In the spring of 2014, the School’s Old Chapel refurbishment was completed and it opened as a multi-purpose venue for use by the School and the local community.

In 2015, thanks to generous donations from OJs and Friends of the School, a new Hickson organ was installed in the Chapel over the summer holidays. The organ stands testament to the centrality of the Chapel and musical life at St John’s.