Designed by Glenn Howells Architects, National Film & Television School is located in Beaconsfield, United Kingdom. The new education building reflects the school’s decision not to relocate to central London but to commit to staying on the Beaconsfield site and to create a ‘digital village’ for the UK’s leading film and television school in the 21st century.
Although the brief identified new teaching accommodation to be provided, the strategy of the proposal was to provide more than just a new building. The brief required new external spaces to unify and strengthen the activities within the School as a whole – this has been successfully achieved.
The building design was generated by the intention to make a very clear, flexible framework with as few ‘fixes’ as possible, hence allowing the School to continue to adapt and modify space to meet their ever changing requirements whilst maximising interaction between students and staff, making the building a meeting place in an otherwise fragmented campus. This is key for film students who need to work with a wide variety of disciplines to create their own end of year film. Student bases were left open to the central generous circulation area to promote interaction and chance meetings.
Key elements of the brief were to create state of the art teaching facilities, a central campus reception, a 150-seat digital cinema, a new multi media library with viewing rooms, café and dining area, Short Course Unit, seminar and teaching rooms.
To minimise the building’s impact on the environment, the thermal mass of the building has been left exposed in all areas to stabilise summer temperatures with night time ventilation to allow it to cool. Natural ventilation has been adopted throughout excluding the cinema and kitchens.