Fresh designs for proposed College boarding house to be unveiled next month

Written by Peter Davison on .

We know what it WON'T look like, but we'll have to wait until October 6 to see the new designsWe know what it WON'T look like, but we'll have to wait until October 6 to see the new designsFresh designs for a new Marlborough College boarding house at one of the gateways to the town will go on display to the public early next month.

Back in March, the College announced its desire to build a new boarding house on a parcel of land called Elmhurst Triangle – known locally as The Paddock – just off the A4 opposite the College Chapel and Memorial Hall.

But the College was – literally – sent back to the drawing board after the designs were criticised by conservation body Historic England, which said the building would have “a marked impact on the Conservation Area’s character and its immediate setting” and demanded “improvements”.

The design was also criticised by some members of Marlborough Town Council’s planning committee, with Cllr Nick Fogg lamenting the “mediocre” design, which he described as resembling “a 19th Century barracks”.

“This site deserves better,” he said. “We would be doing a service to the College [to ask them to] come up with something better,” he said.

Wiltshire Council was due to consider the planning application in June, but the College withdrew the proposals.

Now the College is preparing to unveil new plans that it hopes will find greater favour with the public.

“We took the decision to withdraw the previous application for a new boarding house earlier this year to allow us time to take feedback,” said the College’s director of corporate resources, Peter Bryan, today (Tuesday).

“As a result we are now working with a new project team, which is being led by internationally acclaimed architects, Allies and Morrison.

“We want to take this opportunity to consult with the local community so their views can help shape our plans for the new House.”

The new designs will be unveiled to the public on Thursday, October 6 from 3pm to 8pm at The Marlburian Centre, Marlborough College.

Members of the project team will be available at the exhibition to discuss the proposals and answer questions, and a second stage of consultation will be held later this year where the plans will be displayed and further comments welcomed, said Mr Bryan.

If granted permission, the boarding house – which will provide accommodation for 71 female students – will be named Dancy House after former Master, John Dancy, who introduced girls to the College for the first time nearly 50 years ago.

It will be the College’s 16th House.