Located in Girvan, Ayrshire Scotland Sacred Heart is a Catholic Primary School providing a caring and supportive learning environment to 128 pupils. With the old site being demolished and a new modernised school built in its place, Sacred Heart were looking for a Furniture and workspace design partner to help deliver a new environment for pupils and staff.
Creating a practical, inspirational and functional environment from scratch
The construction of the new building meant an entire school fit out was required. This was a daunting proposition for the school, so finding a furniture partner that could support them through the entire process was important. Sacred Heart’s management team wanted it to be a very collaborative process where staff could input their ideas and creativity and needed an entirely consultative approach.
Rachael, the Deputy Head, explained, “the council representatives gave the staff ownership of the interior design, but it felt daunting to us”. With Sharp’s guidance, we inputted into the design and layout of each space, making the process fun whilst offering their expert advice.
The second challenge for Sacred Heart was to create spaces that were practical, and inspirational but functional spaces for both staff and pupils. Rachael explained, “we wanted staff to be comfortable, for them to have space to feel they are rested and have a time-out”. This was an opportunity for Sharp to get creative and introduce the latest innovative furniture solutions.
Lastly, Rachael carried on saying, “Staff really felt we were lacking storage in the new school. We wanted a storage unit that will support a uniform bank. The idea of getting storage for a uniform bank is ideal because we can select colours to complement the rooms. In the old school, we had a temporary solution which broke after a few weeks. We needed storage units with durability”. By partnering with Sharp, Sacred Heart were able to overcome all of the obstacles they had and were fully guided and supported through this re-fit project.
Innovative layout and furniture solutions
Sharp took a consultative approach to Sacred Heart’s challenges, listening to the thoughts and ideas of every member of staff and having discussions about the best use of space.
Sharp managed the entire project from start to finish including design, installation and logistics as well as the removal of waste, Rachael explained, “Sharp made the transition into the new building easier. The guys were very accommodating in terms of moving the furniture from room to room and removing the packaging from the school”. To keep consistent Sharp provided a full end-to-end service including design, installation and removal of packaging and waste.
Sharp encouraged choices that supported the staff’s ideas and were able to integrate each idea into the classrooms and collaborative spaces. Rachael explained, “We had an idea to integrate storage units into the reception area. We originally looked at suggestions from a highstreet brand. However, Sharp gave similar ideas to accommodate our storage. To keep the quality consistent we took Sharp's proposal on board”.
Sharp supplied ideas and delivered high-quality products which were integrated into the school’s design. Sharp was able to create flexible and multi-purpose workspaces by combining seating spaces into the walls of the collaborative break-out rooms.
High quality furniture solutions delivered on time and to budget
Sharp was able to deliver a first-class learning environment and collaborative space for Sacred Heart, comprising fully fitted out; classrooms, hallways, reception areas, offices and collaborative spaces. Rachael continued, “It is a place of ease and comfort for the staff, when they first saw the collaborative space, they were overwhelmed with the innovative ergonomic designs”. Sharp’s expert advice eased Sacred Heart’s uncertainty and saw Sharp could be entrusted to fulfil the complete fit-out.
Sharp managed the entire project from start to finish, designing the spaces, delivering and assembling the furniture. This took the pressure away from Sacred Heart’s management team, freeing them up to focus on their day jobs. Rachael expressed, “the Sharp team kept us informed and kept on top of the timeframes and schedule. Everything came on time and the team were the fastest working group in the building”. As a result, Sharp were able to execute the spaces to align with the staff’s visions and fit the school with appropriate furniture. Rachael continued, “The team assembled the storage units on site, and it was better than we expected. The functionality fulfilled the purpose of a uniform bank”.
Sharp continue to have conversations with Sacred Heart who want further guidance on their future furniture needs.