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The Gryphon School was built in 1992 to serve 900 pupils but has since grown to accommodate 1600 students. This extension, completed in Spring 2014, provides two new classrooms and goes some way to relieving the pressure on existing accommodation. The project also includes a passenger lift which has improved circulation particularly for disabled students.

The extension sits in a corner of the School site formerly used as an outdoor space by sixth formers.  An ‘architectural statement’ was not appropriate or necessary here and therefore the building was simply designed to blend with the original School.  The architectural challenge here was to design a building within a confined space which minimised the impact on neighbouring classrooms, maintained escape routes, and as far as possible protected the outlook from neighbouring residential properties. The solution was to rotate the extension at an angle of 45 degrees, and although this may look at odds with the general School plan, the new extension sits comfortably with the existing form of the School and its site.

Contractor  – Stepnell Ltd

Quantity Surveyor – Slade Parry Ltd

Structural Engineer –  John Beveridge Associates


The Gryphon School is proud to have a long history with Oriel Architecture.  Paul and his team have always demonstrated a highly professional approach whilst ensuring the school receives a personal service which is underpinned by transparency and integrity at all times.  The school has recently appointed Oriel Architecture as lead architect on large projects which include an extension to the school café, conversion of squash courts into classrooms, extension of Modern Foreign Languages Department, and the design of a new classroom block.  Paul has also been invaluable to the school in his undoubted ability to work seamlessly with building contractors, engineers, surveyors, planners, and professional building consultants.   I have (without hesitation) recommended Oriel Architecture to my peers who work in business management roles within other large schools.
Bursar, The Gryphon School, Sherborne
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