Lord Williams’s Lower School in Oxfordshire Finds Appealing Outdoor Canopy

The outdoor shelter has been well-received by students and staff; everyone can get a mental health boost in the fresh air whenever they like on their breaks, even if it’s raining! The design works well with the existing buildings and the possible uses for the canopy are endless.

Project Specification

What was the project brief?

Lord Williams’s Lower School in Thame, Oxfordshire had the idea to have a canopy installed to improve its outdoor facilities. They wanted to provide students with a safe, sheltered space where they could socialise and eat during breaks from their studies and also benefit from spending time in the fresh air. The canopy, therefore, needed to be adaptable to different uses, and the staff also wanted it to be able to withstand all sorts of weather and have an attractive, classic design. They contacted A&S Landscape to tackle this project and we were thrilled to accept.

What was our outdoor canopy solution?

We discussed possible solutions for this complex brief with Lord Williams’s Lower School and they eventually decided that our Motiva Duo™ was the best fit. The curved roof design with a duopitch symmetric variant is an effective configuration for standalone structures, so this model was well-suited to being the school’s much-needed dining and socialising shelter – and it could have further uses! A&S Landscape installed the canopy structure with an Opal roof and galvanised steelwork, providing a simple, appealing design that easily blended in with the look of the grounds and would last for years to come. The high-quality polycarbonate roofing also ensured that anyone enjoying time outdoors beneath the canopy would be protected in bad weather.

What was the result of the shelter?

The outdoor shelter has been well-received by students and staff; everyone can get a mental health boost in the fresh air whenever they like on their breaks, even if it’s raining! The design works well with the existing buildings and the possible uses for the canopy are endless – it could even be used as an outdoor classroom shelter to mix up teachers’ routines! There is now more space at lunchtime for children to eat and hang out with friends, so it has helped to reduce pressure on the indoor dining facilities too. A&S Landscape was pleased to hear that the canopy has already proven to be such an asset to this school.

About the client

Lord Williams’s Lower School is part of Lord Williams’s School, a split-site comprehensive institution that also has a nearby Upper School. It educates students from Years 7-9 and successfully promotes ‘personal, social and educational development to enable all to achieve at the highest level possible’. It offers exciting extra-curricular activities to enrich the children’s experience there, which include international visits and foreign exchanges, high participation in the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, and art and music clubs. It was a pleasure to work with the positive, inclusive staff and help them to improve daily life for their students through our canopy.

Lord Williams’s Lower School is situated in Thame, a market town in Oxfordshire near the Chiltern Hills. It features many buildings of historical interest, parks, a museum, a theatre and regular family-friendly events. Thame’s classic English look has also made it one of the most frequently used locations for filming the ITV series, Midsomer Murders.

How can eating outdoors improve children’s mental health?

Large canopy we designed for The Cardinal Wiseman SchoolSchools can be stressful places for young people, so it’s essential that staff put things in place to maintain their wellbeing. Encouraging them to eat outside is a simple but effective option, as this has many mental health benefits. Spending time in a different space can help children to get out of the educational mindset and relax with friends and classmates more easily, so they’re not as focused on exams. Research has shown that being outdoors can lower stress hormones and boost mood, which can have a knock-on effect of helping with memory and concentration, followed by improving grades and satisfaction with their learning.

Furthermore, getting more Vitamin D from sunlight can help to protect people against depression – as well as a host of physical diseases. You can encourage your students to eat outdoors by installing a dining shelter in your school’s grounds which will protect them from rain and wind in all seasons. Learn more about the benefits and practicalities of purchasing one of our products by calling A&S Landscape today on 01743 444100.

What other types of canopies does A&S Landscape sell?

We offer a wide range of canopies to suit the needs of different schools, businesses and organisations – you can see an overview of our selection on our canopies page here. It includes everything from covered walkway systems to make sites with multiple buildings more unified, to entrance canopies to signpost the ways in to hospitals and shade sails to brighten up parks. Email us now at [email protected] or give us a call on 01743 444100 to speak to our team and find your perfect shelter solutions.

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