The new Eton College Sports and Aquatics Centre

Eton College, the prestigious college of United Kingdom, near the famous Windsor castle, has a new Sports and Aquatics Centre.

Also published in: Tsport 351
centro sportivo all'Eton College: la piscina

New sports center for Eton College, the UK’s most prestigious private high school, a stone’s throw from Windsor Castle. It’s a precise realization that fits naturally into the landscape of the English countryside, surrounded by greenery.

The new building of Eton College Sports and Acquatics Centre – with a 25m 8 lane pool and a 4-court sports hall – is conceived as a connected series of interior and exterior rooms and gardens. 

It is centred between a formal wall entrance courtyard on one side and an informal ‘hidden’ garden on the other. Connecting the two, a central link runs between the two main sporting volumes, bringing daylight, sunlight and fresh air into the heart of the building.

It has been designed as a playful arrangement of rectangular open and closed volumes, as minimal as possible in terms of sporting functionality to ensure the building lies as low as it can in the landscape, barely visible above the treeline.

In the Eton College Sports and Acquatics CentreEton College Sports and Acquatics Centre, rooflights to the northern edges of the pool and sports hall roofs bring daylight into these deep plan spaces, casting dramatic shadows onto the brick walls. 

Large windows are positioned to give views out to the trees and planting beyond on all sides, enhancing the swimming experience. Glulam louvres to the southern entrance and east end of the pool have been positioned to avoid glare in the early mornings and evenings.

The building of Eton College Sports and Acquatics Centre has been designed to achieve BREEAM Excellent and includes high levels of natural daylight and ventilation, a green roof and PVs. 

The structure is mostly glulam timber, with CLT roof panels spanning across the beams (visible on the projecting canopies of the entrance and pool), which also enabled a quick erection time and took the handset brick facades off the critical path.