As part of the Southwark £200m Building Schools for the Future programme, Balfour Beatty led the consortia with Southwark Council for the redevelopment of all 10 secondary schools in the borough. M+A were part of the successful consortia designing and building extraordinary new secondary schools for Southwark, many of which became academies with education specialisms.
St Michaels Catholic College was chosen as an example of an inner-urban school to be a pathfinder site in the Southwark BSF programme. Being located within the Bermondsey Dickens Estate, close to the River Thames and the Tower of London, the design of external areas was informed by principles of inclusivity, identity, safety, security, and environmental awareness. Due to the urban setting, the grounds to the school needed to deliver designated areas for formal sports as well as informal play, social areas and more quiet meditative spaces.