Part of a comprehensive masterplan created for St Margaret’s Anglican Girls School, the Ascot secondary school’s new Sports Hub has been designed by Blight Rayner Architecture to intertwine the values of sport and learning into the lifestyles of students and teachers.
Comprising a 25 metre heated water polo pool that features two 50 metre lap lanes, a strength and conditioning gym, physical education centre, basketball and gymnastics hall and two tennis courts, the Sports Hub encourages a healthy lifestyle for students, as well as nurturing the various sporting talents students may possess.
The entirety of the sports hall has been clad in a translucent polycarbonate, which ensures an influx of natural light. The base is also able to be opened out to the adjoining courts outside, giving teachers the ability to group classes together for large-scale classes. The various open-air courts and pool spaces are defined by lightweight solid and perforated screens that form outdoor rooms. Most of the indoor spaces open up to these spaces enabling variable teaching settings between inside and outside.
The swimming pool and surrounding terraces are covered by a retractable shade sail, which allows for the pool to be used all year round. The exposed brickwork walls within the interior hark back to mid-century school design, with the cream coloured render and blue shades of the water, courts and external facade allowing for a gentle colour palette.
The new Sports Hub for St Margaret’s has been created in an attempt to inspire students to maximise their engagement and interest in both sports and sports health. Through their design, Blight Rayner has allowed the school to implement sport sciences into programs throughout the campus. As well as being a place to refine skills and hold various lessons and carnivals, the hub is also a recreational space within the school, allowing students to engage in other activities away from the classroom.