Beethoven Street School Site


Beethoven Street School in Queen’s Park
The site consisted of the Main Building, the Craft Block, Holland Block, the School-keeper's cottage and various outbuildings. The plan was to convert the listed building into residential accommodation. The City Council insisted that the historical, architectural and educational nature of the Main building must be retained in some way. The external structure was not to be altered and any new buildings had to be low-level, respecting the main building and in scale and sympathy with the Queen's Park ones.


The Converted Beethoven Street School site

Acton Housing and Community Housing Associations combined forces to build 52 housing units, Part were affordable new-build dwellings and part in converted buildings. Community Housing Association developed 26 units for rent, including 10 special needs flats. Acton Housing Association also developed 26 units, which are a mixture of rented and shared ownership accommodation. The Main Hall was restored and devoted to community use.

The Design solution

The Main Building and Craft block were good, powerful buildings, but the Holland Block, built a few years later than the Main Building, had been adapted and cut about on a number of occasions over the years until it had lost any architectural merit. It was decided to demolish the Holland Block, the Schoolkeeper's cottage and various outbuildings, to make room for new housing and to restore or convert the rest.

In Third Avenue, new street-facing terraces in red brick, with bays, were created. These are in red brick and have similar building lines and plot widths to their early Queen's Park neighbours.

The Main Building was restored, with new glazed entrances created to welcome visitors and make the building accessible to the community. The entrance from Third Avenue was framed by a break in the street terrace, while the entrance from Beethoven Street is over a raised bridge to accommodate a change of level. The front classroom block was converted into 10 housing units.

 

Page 218
Page 220
Updated January 23, 2011