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The Learning with Water: SuDS at Birkett House School is an educational Sustainable Drainage System (SuDS) created as part of a new building to relocate Birkett House School to share a campus with Wigston Academy.
Birkett House is a school for 175 pupils aged four to 19 with special educational needs and the SuDS scheme was designed to provide a safe, inspirational, life‐enhancing outdoor facility for the pupils.
At the same time, it had to create a sustainable, extensive and effective drainage system for the new buildings and the site.
The SuDS scheme includes a drainage system with storm water run‐off discharged to a series of swales and wetlands within the car parking and playground areas.
The aim was to get water right into the heart of the children’s daily life – providing stimulating experiences and interesting ways of learning about the environment, nature, science and other subjects.
Unusually for this type of school, a series of rain gardens has been created in the play areas.
A wetland site is part of the school's outdoor learning, with a shallow pond and planting. An area for wildflowers was also included to improve biodiversity at the site.
Far from tucking the SuDS scheme away at the back of the site, out of the way, the scheme was designed to go right up to the classroom areas.
DSA Environment + Design
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