Wilton CE Primary School Playground

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4th June
Wilton CE Primary School Playground image

Project Details

3 weeks
£81, 800

What was their goal?

Wilton CE Primary School was an interesting project as it was part of a much larger redevelopment in and around Wilton. Alongside a new housing development, the local school was also funded with a budget for improvements ranging from educational to maintenance. That’s where we came in… 

They got in touch and explained their side of things and how as part of their redevelopment they wanted to create a brand new play area. Their goal was to make their school as  attractive to as many prospective parents and students as possible through improving their facilities.

Did they know what they wanted? 

As is often the case with a lot of these things, they weren't entirely sure what they wanted, they knew their goals, but weren’t sure how to achieve them. Naturally, our job is then to listen, understand and develop a set of criteria that will form the design brief of their playground.

After several conversations and site visits, we had arrived at a location, a design and the concepts that would see their goals through to fruition.

How did the design come about? What about the outdoor classroom?

What was great about Wilton’s school was there was tons of green space for opportunity and creativity, it was surrounded by fields for sport and play, however, we eventually decided on an area that was where the old swimming pool used to live. This way we weren’t encroaching on the natural landscape and, at the same time, repurposing an unutilised facility—staff and students could still enjoy their green spaces on the dry days and at the same time have a dedicated area that could be used come rain or shine. 

The playground design developed from their school’s needs, wants and wishes. Their main request when we started developing ideas and concepts was:

“A space where we could teach the children outside but still keeping in touch with the feel of a playground, not just another classroom. [...] We want it to be multi-purpose so kids can use it on their break too.” — Head Teacher of Wilton CE Primary School.


We thought this was a terrific idea, an outdoor classroom so you could get the children out a little bit more in the fresh air and learning as well. As such, we set about creating a design that would really get the staff and students excited to teach/learn outside. It soon became one of the major features of the project. What's unique is that we designed it to sit across two levels, with access from the ground and the hillside levels giving it a bit of an upstairs downstairs feel — perfect for playtime adventures. 

After that we introduced a few more accompanying elements that would bring the whole space together, that being the play tower clubhouse, the clamber stack and the rock wall. Plenty of choice for all kinds of creativity and play. Finally, the ground itself was made of 300 square metres of green wet pour so that come rain or shine the children could play outside.

What kind of hurdles did you encounter?

The elephant in the room was always the ground, deciding to repurpose the old swimming pool did come with its challenges, but with enough time and planning we were able to remove the remains of a once forgotten amenity and ensure the ground was structurally sound from an engineering point of view.

Were they happy with the final result?

Yes, they're incredibly happy with the results. We were even featured in the local ‘Salisbury Journal’ where the school had the playground blessed by the Bishop. A job well done on all sides.

What makes this project standout in your mind?

This project sticks clear for the sheer variety and scale that the project entailed. So, it's not just the play area and it wasn't just the ground works or surfacing, it was how all the individual elements combined together. From incorporating the outdoor classroom, to the clamber stack rock wall and clubhouse, with the surrounding environment — I think we nailed the goals of the decision makers. Now, Wilton CE Primary has a play area that will entertain for many years to come and leave a great impression on prospective parents both near and far.


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