City and Islington College: Centre for Lifelong Learning

London, UK

Over recent years City and Islington College has been engaged in an extensive accommodation strategy, rationalising its activities into five centres on four, rather than ten, separate sites. The Centre for Lifelong Learning at Finsbury Park is one of the key projects in this programme of rationalisation, with a curriculum tending towards the older student and returning learners. Language and IT form a large part of the curriculum, but this is combined with a range of more vocational, practical courses which give a rich mixture of activities.

At the core of the scheme is an adapted Victorian school building. The new accommodation wraps around this to create a strong dynamic between new and old and a real sense of spatial diversity, all enhanced by several specially commissioned artworks. Unusually, the building also houses a public branch library, the intention being that library users will become inspired to enrol for a course at the College.