News

Architecture in Schools: Primary - Competition winners announced

Winners announced at East Wintergarden Awards Ceremony after primary school pupils design their own inhabitable bridges in response to Thomas Heatherwick''''s controversial Garden Bridge Project.

Hundreds of parents, teachers, architects and schoolchildren celebrated Open-City''''s architecture in Schools: Primary programme last week (July 11) at an awards ceremony and exhibition hosted by programme sponsor Canary Wharf Group plc at its East Wintergarden venue. As well as receiving prizes for their work, the children heard from the Project Director for the Garden Bridge, Anthony Marley, Heatherwick''''s lead architect Jakob Lund, and Canary Wharf Group''''s John Garwood.

John Garwood, Managing Director & Group Company Secretary of Canary Wharf Group said: "It''''s all about aspiration and so it is important for us to inspire the next generation of designers. We are always pleased to support Open-City''''s Architecture in Schools: Primary Programme, which we hope will encourage young pupils to be more aware of the importance of good design and architecture in their own lives"

This year, over 650 pupils from London''''s primary schools from boroughs including Haringey, Southwark and Waltham Forest, have taken part in Open-City''''s pioneering Architecture in Schools programme. The two-month project, which involved building visits and a design challenge, saw children design their own inhabitable bridges, taking inspiration from Heatherwick Studio''''s controversial garden bridge design. Stirling Prize-winning practices
WilkinsonEyre, Stanton Williams, AHMM and Grimshaw were among the architects leading the design collaboration with the pupils.

The winning designs included a ''''Disco Bridge'''', a ''''Bubble Bridge'''' and an ''''Action Mania Bridge''''. The main prize, the Open-City All-rounder, was awarded to three pupils from Reay Primary School. Their design of ''''The Elizabeth Garrett Hospital Bridge'''' was undertaken with guidance from Stanton Williams. In their submission, the Reay pupils wrote: "We learned that although solid structure is practical, a little beauty can change the mood and atmosphere of a room, and if you can combine the two you will have a wonderful living space." In total, more than 160 entries were submitted to the inter-school competition, with models of all the winning schemes exhibited at East Wintergarden. Open-City director Rory Olcayto said: "The more of us who participate in debating, shaping and mending the cities we live in, the better they will be, and the more reflective of our communities they will be too. That''''s the underlying message of Open City''''s Architecture in Schools programme."

"At the awards night we saw the best of the children''''s drawings and models. The work was outstanding. All of our partners - the architects, the teachers, and our sponsor Canary Wharf Group, deserve credit of course - but the success of this programme rests with the schoolchildren. Unsurprisingly, they never fail to impress!"

Sarah Smith, the creative development lead at Henry Maynard Primary School, who have participated in the Architecture in Schools programme for the past three years, said that the school "have continued to apply for the programme because it is a rich learning experience for our pupils. Throughout the project, learning in Maths, Science, DT and Art and Design is promoted, and children begin to see links between subjects. Taking part has encouraged me to consider how we can incorporate architecture into our school curriculum and it is my intention that this will continue to develop."

You can find out more about the Architecture in Schools: Primary programme here.

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