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    Picture: Peter Cook

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Superb surgical strike from Bennetts

Jez Abbott
03 Apr 2019

The design will accommodate the college’s changing space requirements

Bennetts Associates has delivered a stunning and superbly stylish HQ for the Royal College of Pathologists in London.

Completion of the 4,500m2 building in East London marks the final step in the college’s move from a traditional Grade 1 listed building in St James to contemporary purpose-built premises.

The design will accommodate the college’s changing space requirements in the coming decades, providing a multitude of flexible educational, workplace, social and visitor areas.

Generous and easily adaptable event spaces accommodate large conferences, dinners, receptions and exhibitions, helping the organisation to host guests from the UK and abroad.

A key feature is an open-plan pavilion with panoramic views over London. The large double height reception space can be used for hosting exhibitions and events.

Enduring and timeless materials include a meticulously crafted concrete frame unifies the building and integrates structure, services and lighting.

Brickwork cladding, also present in the grand atria, stitches spaces together and the structure features large spans and few columns for built-in flexibility.

Boardmarked concrete, coffered concrete soffits and waxed mild steel staircases are complemented by rich walnut timber panelling and perforated brick walls.

Environmental efficiency plays a key role in the design with exposed coffered concrete slabs used throughout the building to form part of the passive cooling strategy.

The HQ boasts excellent natural daylight provided by the large atrium that brings light into the deeper plan office spaces.

Rob Bearyman, associate director of Bennetts Associates, said: “This project challenged us to think about what a contemporary royal college should be like.

“It had to be a substantial building worthy of the college’s past, but equally important was the need to create an inclusive, welcoming place for people to share ideas about the future.”

Daniel Ross, chief executive of the Royal College of Pathologists, added: “This will be our administrative home for at least the next 50 years.”

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