Harris Invictus Academy in Croydon designed by Scott Brownrigg was a Building Magazine Project of the Year Finalist in 2018. The Academy is an outstanding example of a Free School in West Croydon, one of the newest secondary schools in London. Procured through the ESFA’s Contractors Framework, the project was conceived by Invictus (a grass roots community organisation) working in partnership with the Harris Federation (a multi-academy trust) with the aim of meeting significant demand within the community for new , high quality school places for local children.
The £20m school occupies a constrained , inner-city site on London Road in West Croydon, an area that suffered extensive damage in the 2012 riots. With a demanding brief , limited funding and high planning expectations , the building delivers a learning environment that exemplifies the ethos of a Harris Federation education, offering exciting educational and community opportunities. It has had a transformational impact on the regeneration of the local, urban area.
In particular , the building’s presence and impact seeing it from London Road fulfils the challenging brief perfectly. And the internal spaces in terms of quality , use of natural light , and generous circulation space make the school feel calm and a great place for teaching and learning. They also contribute considerably to the effective management of behaviour.
Contrasol worked closely with the design team in order to deliver a stunning Brise Soleil solution, with the building forming the secure line to the street. With spaces utilised by the community located at ground floor level this therefore helps in activating the street frontage , with our Vertical brise soleil providing both the solar shading and an element of visual screening. The building is low carbon and energy efficient and become a catalyst for the regeneration of this area of West Croydon.