The Gates Primary School, Westhoughton

Keen to make better use of the space surrounding their Key Stage 2 classrooms, The Gates contacted Newground and asked for our ideas for an interesting, exciting and educational outdoor classroom. The staff had many suggestions and requirements; the space needed to be functional for a whole class to use, provide a stage for performance, covered work area, water investigation and story-telling areas, as well as allowing children to develop their imaginations, within a budget of £16,000.

Newground’s Landscape Services team were able to meet the school’s demands, as well as creating an inviting environment to enhance the school’s entrance and promote interest in the natural world. We have installed a variety of new surfaces including stones decorated by the children, a learning hut and a raised stage complete with canopy and curtains! Sensory planting softens the area and provides interest and colour. An Investigation Zone provides cobbles, plants, tree trunks and a Bug Hotel for mini beats to thrive, and we’ve provided outdoor microscopes for investigation.

The build process took just three weeks to make the transformation and the space is now being well used by the school, for a variety of subject activities.

The key stage manager says, “the outdoor area is fab! All the teachers have commented on how lovely it is and I'm really looking forward to actually using it now!”

"It has been a pleasure working with Newground on developing our outdoor learning environment. They understood our vision for the area and were flexible in plans and were able to offer suggestions we had not even thought of to improve the area. The area, resources, workmanship, looks to be of high quality and we look forward to the children using it," Karen Forshaw, Head Teacher, The Gates Primary School.


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