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The Laboratory, Dulwich College

A virtuoso of finish and precision

Credit: Daniel Shearing

Grimshaw for Dulwich College

Contract value: £14m

GIA: 4,400m²

This immaculately detailed science lab is a virtuoso of finish and precision. It shows what is achievable under a D+B contract.

The building balances and complements the 1870s New College by Charles Barry Junior by picking up on its red bricks and beige stone colours. Sculptor Peter Randall-Page developed the facade pattern in a workshop with boys from the school, based on an algorithm found in all branches of science. The result is magnificent and completely appropriate for the site.

  • Credit: Daniel Shearing
  • Credit: Daniel Shearing
  • Credit: Daniel Shearing
  • Credit: Daniel Shearing

An elegant S-plan wraps the science labs around two communal spaces: a timber panelled hallway containing Shackleton’s boat and a lecture hall. The labs are bright and beautiful, with floor to ceiling windows and views across the campus. Students were hugely enthusiastic about the building, while the head teacher emphasises its union of arts and science.

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