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News > Rugby School News > Kilbracken Redevelopments Underway: Eco-Friendly Upgrades and Enhanced Living Spaces

Kilbracken Redevelopments Underway: Eco-Friendly Upgrades and Enhanced Living Spaces

The extensive redevelopment of Kilbracken, initiated last summer, is on track for completion by the October half-term. Originally opened on the current Barby Road site in 1941, it was among the earliest purpose-built boarding houses alongside Sheriff. With a budget of £5 million allocated for the project, the meticulous design and planning process for this next iteration began two years prior to the start of construction. 

The plan for Kilbracken includes the reconstruction of much of the existing building, as well as the addition of a brand-new extension. In a mere three weeks following the demolition of the existing structure, the new framework has emerged with remarkable speed. Sustainability has been at the forefront of the design and build, with thick, super-insulated panels and low U-Value windows ensuring that the project prioritizes eco-consciousness. In preparation for the project, and to keep with the sustainable goals, insulation has also been added onto the inside of external walls of the existing building, with double glazing installed throughout. 

Externally, the facade of the new building will showcase brick on the first floor, with beautifully curved handmade terracotta tiles above. This choice of design harmonizes with the original circular windows, maintaining continuity with existing features. Inside, the top two floors will accommodate bedrooms with ensuites, whilst the ground floor will serve as a communal hub for the boys. 

Upon completion, Kilbracken will offer 56 fully refurbished rooms, each with en suites. Single rooms are being provided for all year groups except for the F Block, which will primarily have twin rooms. In the last couple of weeks notable progress has been made in the upstairs bedrooms, with plastering completed in most areas and furniture installation underway. The bespoke bed designs have taken years to perfect and are finished with an aesthetically pleasing wood effect to create a warm and inviting space for the students. Carpets and curtains are next to be installed!  

Additional amenities include ‘brew rooms’ on each floor and communal study rooms for the F-Block following the success of communal work rooms in Whitelaw. Downstairs, many of the smaller rooms have been opened up to create a spacious communal area that will contain study benches and workspaces. The traditional paneled dining room will remain unchanged but will receive new curtains, while the antiquated kitchen opposite undergoes a complete overhaul to improve functionality as well as the flow of service. 

One significant alteration, championed by Housemaster Saul Foulds, involves the relocation of communal areas exclusively to the ground floor, promoting cohesive social spaces and fostering a sense of community amongst the boys. Engagement with the boys and house staff has been important in determining the finishing touches for these areas, with discussions even touching on the inclusion of a pool table!  

The activity continues outside the property with major plumbing works currently underway, and the addition of zinc roofing imminent. Refurbishment also extends to the private side, a listed building, which will receive a new heating system, carpets, and general decoration. 

We're incredibly excited to share progress as we continue to work on this exciting project. Look out for a launch event around Christmas time, where you will be able to join us to commemorate the reopening of Kilbracken. 

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