Hackney New School London 2013–2015

Hackney New School is a mixed-ability Free School with a focus on music, combining a 500-pupil secondary school and 200-pupil sixth form. 

Final phase conversion works completed on completion of Primary School, 2019

Image 1

  • blueprintlayer3.jpg
    Ground Floor Plan
  • blueprintlayer2.jpg
    First Floor Plan
  • blueprintlayer1.jpg
    Fourth Floor Plan
  • HNS_Model 1
    Cast model of Kingsland Rd composition
  • HNS Model 2
    Cast model of Canal Basin composition
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    Bridge connections between Canal and Downham Rd buildings
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    Kingsland Rd building west façade detail
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    Canal building east façade detail
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    Canal building west elevation
  • 1302_N788.jpg
    Kingsland Rd building west façade
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    Canal building east façade and bridges
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    School entrance viewed from Lee Street from east
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    School entrance viewed from Lee Street from east
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    ADT studio interior looking north towards Dalston
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    ADT studio interior looking west towards the Canal building
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    Physics lab interior looking north
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    Classroom studio interior looking west towards the canal
  • 1302_N722.jpg
    Hall interior viewed from first floor mezzanine
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    Planometric view of Kingsland and Canal buildings looking south
  • 1302_N423.jpg
    Planometric view of the new Kingsland & Canal buildings alongside the existing Wharfmaster’s House & converted Downham Rd building
  • 1302_N403.jpg
    Canal building long section
  • 1302_N401.jpg
    Site cross section through the Canal building
  • HNS_HNPS Model
    Cast masterplan models of primary & secondary schools


  • Appointment: 2013
  • Construction start: 2014
  • Completion: 2015
  • Area: 5,500m2
  • Budget: £11.5m
  • Form of contract: Design & Build
  • Client: Willmott Dixon
  • Contractor: Willmott Dixon
  • Services Engineer: Skelly & Couch
  • Structural Engineer: Pure Structures
  • Planning Consultant: CMA Planning
  • Building Control: MLM
  • Project Manager: Mace
  • User Group: Hackney New School


  • ‘Today in England’, in: Casabella, vol.933 (Mondadori Media, May 2022), pp.21–25
  • Owen Hatherley, ‘Hackney Free School, New Primary School & Flats’, in: Modern Buildings in Britain: A Gazetteer (Particular Books, 2022), p.136
  • Competitionline (online, 7 December 2016)
  • BauNetz (Online, 6 December 2016)
  • Domus (online, 2 November 2016)
  • AJ Specification (November 2016)
  • ‘Hackney New School makes architectural grade’, in: Hackney Citizen (8 June 2016)
  • ‘School design that responds to its urban setting’, in: Education Design & Build (May 2016), pp.30–331
  • ‘There's a lot to learn from this school’, in: The Observer (1 May 2016), p.31
  • ‘Bridge building’, in: Architecture Today (April 2016), pp.22–31
  • ‘The practical considerations for adaptive reuse’, in: Education Design & Build (edb) (January 2014), pp.22–23
  • ‘Harmony in Hackney’, in: Building Design (6 September 2013), p.5
  • Hackney New School’, in: Divisare (Online, 8 April 2020)


  • RIBA Regional Award, (Shortlisted) 2017
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