Archbishop Tenison’s School 2016

Emmanuel Fakoya

pavilion project

His story, in his words…….

“Compost encourages growth and longevity in plants; so despite humble appearances it can be perceived as a nourishing life-food… inadvertently through the building and upkeep of a garden space I too found my own life sustained by similarly nourishing benefits.

For many years I have found myself fascinated with not just architecture, but (even more fundamentally) spaces. During my Upper Sixth studies and applications for Further Education, I was fortunate to come across an opportunity which ultimately inspired the basis to my idea of creating a social space – this opportunity was a newly allocated green space for a secondary school. My plan was not simply the creation of a social space but a space in which its users were primarily responsible for it upkeep – teaching them both how to garden and care for plants, as well as giving users a sense of personal investment into the space.

I undertook the main construction of the site with senior members of the school body: this being the making of the 2 garden beds. For the creation of these beds I had decided that I didn’t want the space to feel overtly precious or delicate to those who would use the space, as any sort of disconnect with the space would make pupils timid in terms of their engagement with the space. As a response to this bothbeds are mostly made from reclaimed timber from around the school – relatability to pupils being an important part of the project.

I have personally experienced a large learning curve through the undertaking of this project. Wanting to build a garden space and actually doing so required an education into not only garden care, but flowers and their behaviours. Through learning about flowers and plants I was able to compose a garden bed which was not only visually impacting but one that could also be of use to its community. I had led two workshops with the most senior and junior pupils, inducting them on the varieties of plants we had in the space – from pansies, to mints, to salad  petals.

After many months undertaking the project it finally came to completion mid-July 2016. The future of the project is almost equal in importance to the building of it. With the plants expected to last till the end of the decade, a seasonal vegetable bed in use, and the senior pupils/caretakers of the space inducting the youngest pupils each term, I foresee the longevity of this project encouraging a growth of responsibility and community.”