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CDC Studio

Cherry Hinton Hall

A local folk legend inspires the remodelling of a Grade 2 listed school. Children explore the timber outdoor classroom before sneaking into the giants reading room to get lost in a story. The existing junior school is refurbished, with the addition of multiple new social spaces.
Interior of the outdoor classroom designed by CDC studios, with wooden balustrades, floor, and sandpit.

Situated in a Grade 2 listed Victorian Hall in the centre of Cherry Hinton Park, Cambridge, the project creates a new home for a Junior school. The scheme includes the refurbishment of the hall and adjacent cottage, with the construction of new-build elements to reorganise the school’s circulation and improve the value of the historic building in its parkland setting.

Entrance to Cherry Hinton Hall
Portrait photograph of Charles Balls
Existing primary school playground at the back of Cherry Hinton Hall
Exterior view of Cherry Hinton Hall with playpark
1888 map of the surrounding area with Cherry Hinton Hall in red and pink
The 1888 maps shows the grounds of the Hall laid out as parkland, with perimeter planting well established along Cherry Hinton Road and a loose avenue from the gate lodge to the Hall The Hall and outbuilding are shown in-situ, with the driveway forming a turning area on the Hall’s south side. Note the courtyard group of outbuildings on the north side of the Hall, including an enclosure – seemingly a kitchen garden
Surrounding buildings in the area with Cherry Hinton Hall highlighted in red and pink as of 1927
By 1927, the billiard room extension is now in position, blocking the former route through to the courtyard and stabling at the rear This access has been re-formed to run to the north-west of the Hall. The front turning area has been made more accommodating of vehicles, and the kitchen garden has a number of glasshouses and temporary buildings in place, evidently indicating a good deal of activity within this part of the hall grounds
3d Rendering by CDC studio of areas to be demolished to protect original features of Cherry Hinton Hall
3d rendering by CDC studio of ground floor showcasing internal demolition strategy in green.
North elevation displaying areas to be demolished
OUTLINE STRATEGY The design aim is to remove later unsightly external extensions and retain and enhance the key original internal architectural features, returning it to its original composition as much as possible. The items highlighted in yellow are proposed to be demolished.
Photograph of Cherry Hinton area with new site in red
Aerial photograph of Cherry Hinton Hall and Park.
Concept plan for demolition and construction of specified areas, by CDC studio
DESIGN DEVELOPMENT - how we created a new courtyard
Overview detailing spaces in the renovated building by CDC studio for Cherry Hinton Hall
Creating a cohesive layout for a Junior School with quality external spaces
New early years courtyard defined by three new elements. The Multi-Purpose Hall, the lightweight timber clad stucture and the glazed link.
A new glazed link nestles behind an existing brick screen wall between the hall and its adjacent cottage building to provide a new staircase for access to staff areas, and enables the formation of large new early years’ spaces that open onto a cleanly defined central courtyard
The timber screen to the stair with cutout provide views out into the courtyard.
The detailing of the glass link includes a glass/glass junction with no visible supporting structure to maintain the delicacy of new against the old.
Original main stair and window within the Hall.
Elevations of the Multi Purpose Hall
Inside the Multi Purpose Hall
  • Client

    International Schools Partnership
  • Location

  • Budget

  • Design Team

    Peter Dann Structural Engineers
    Max fordham
    Sharps Redmore
  • Contractor

  • Team

    Robin Dryer, Mark Clarke, Tom Odorico, Alasdair Ferguson, Hannah Verner
  • Photographs

    Richard Chivers