How Tilbury Douglas’ biophilic school could ‘influence next-gen design’


Tilbury Douglas has been appointed as main contractor for the UK’s first purpose-built biophilic primary school. 

The new St Mary’s Catholic Voluntary Academy.
Credit: Tilbury Douglas
by Rory ButlerJanuary 6, 2023

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St Mary’s Catholic Voluntary Academy is part of a pilot scheme by the Department for Education (DfE). 

The new school, part of St Ralph Sherwin Catholic Multi Academy Trust, will replace the original school destroyed by fire in October 2020. 

Biophilic Design is a concept within the construction industry to increase occupant connectivity to the natural environment through the direct and indirect use of nature, and space and place conditions. 

  • Five new single-storey buildings 
  • Low carbon timber walkways 
  • Photovoltaic solar panels 
  • Wildflower seeded roof 
  • Net-zero in operation 

“We are proud to be the main contractor responsible for delivering this innovative pilot scheme for the DfE, as it will enhance pupil experience and influence the next generation of school design,” said Simon Butler, MD Building Central at Tilbury Douglas. 

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