The vision was to enhance the college community by providing a much improved social space facility at each site. A colourful, high quality and comfortable place where staff and students can relax for a coffee break, meet visitors to the college, spend time informally between classes, utilise the university’s Wi-Fi connection, display student work and hold impromptu discussions with colleagues. The college was keen to continue with a consistent and creative vision of the new social spaces developed in the east end sites in 2011.
The aim of the Lime Grove project was to create a colourful, high quality and comfortable place where staff and students can relax for a coffee break, meet visitors to the college, spend time informally between classes, utilise the university’s Wi-Fi connection, display student work and hold impromptu discussions with colleagues. It also provided space for visitors and interviewees who currently sit in reception. One idea was to open up the lounge in B007 to the exterior landscaped space, subject to local planning and heritage status checks.
Up until the summer of 2012, the room that became the lounge was a teaching space.
Development work by contractors;
The decoration has been mostly completed, with striking feature wall to complement the wonderful brick fireplace and restored parquet flooring. Note the door and strip lighting have been removed.
Instead of a stationery cupboard we now have this arched doorway from the main reception and new fashion lab, a student resource and study space.
The lounge a few days after opening
One observation is that the laptop tables are not used for working on, despite being height adjustable. So perhaps a lesson learned?
Students have quickly made themselves at home…but then this is their space, somewhere that they did not have at this site.
Counter for laptops, lunch or leaflets…
Gilt effect picture frames now show student work, another factor in allowing students to take ownership of their space. The exhibited work was chosen by students and will be rotated during the year.
In December, an intimate event was held in the Lounge, ex-frontman of Doctors of Madness Richard Strange in discussion with costume designer, Vicki Russell. With thanks to Manoj Mistry for photography.
Next door is the Fashion Lab, a student resource space which is managed by the schools’ Creative Director. This space is now available as a drop in facility for students and staff to use for group work, research, meetings with staff and the anticipated magazine development sessions with the Creative Director, whose office is adjoining.
This office has recycled pine table tops as part of the sustainability drive to source environmentally friendly furniture where possible, and it looks good too