Our relationship with Millfield School started over 20 years ago when we were appointed to design a three-story classroom block at Millfield Preparatory School. Other opportunities followed including a new 550 seat dining hall and associated catering facilities and an innovative elliptical common room to Warner House that combined two school houses into one. Fast forward to today, and our designs for a new Music School and Concert Hall – Johnson Hall – sit at the heart of the campus forming an attractive and welcoming venue for both Millfield students and international musicians.
Creating environments that enhance the student experience
The L-shaped three-storey classroom block linked two existing classroom blocks and comprised 18 classrooms for Maths, English and Languages as well as computer rooms and a food technology unit.
Millfield’s preferred route for selecting an architect for major projects has always been limited competition, whereby a small group of architects are selected and invited to prepare a design for a specific brief.
So, it was that while we were completing the classroom block we were invited to participate in a limited design competition for the new dining hall on the main Millfield campus at Street. Our design was selected, and we were appointed to see it through to completion. Other opportunities followed, including works to combine two school houses into one – Warner House – by means of a new cloister-like circulation intervention that successfully connected various disparate existing buildings and enclosed a new elliptical common room (soon to become known as ‘The Egg’).
It was also through the limited competition route that our design for the new Music School and Concert Hall was selected. This is a sophisticated building that combines a well-appointed music school in a three-storey building with an adjoining concert hall. It sits in the heart of the campus and forms an attractive and welcoming centre-piece. Since opening the concert hall – Johnson Hall – has become a popular Somerset arts venue hosting numerous concerts that showcase both Millfield School students and international musicians.
Founder and Director of DKA with experience in the design and construction of most building types, including healthcare, education, commercial, leisure and residential in both public and private sectors. Experienced in feasibility and urban design studies, David is responsible for running the design studio and retains a personal involvement with projects in the office in all stages of the design process, particularly at concept and sketch design stages.
Andy became Education Associate within the practice in 2003. He places a strong emphasis on consultation, believing that engagement with stakeholders maximises the potential value of a project to school and community and can also be an educational, inspiring and enjoyable process in itself. This approach results in buildings that are not only visually and spatially exciting, but also finely tuned to users’ needs and aspirations. As a qualified DQI Facilitator, he also runs independent consultation events on projects designed by others.