Treehouse Library

Playful outdoor learning
Side view of self supporting multi coloured Treehouse Library Made From Scratch
The brief for this landscaping project for a friendly Islington school was improving access for the children to an unused area of the grounds for learning, nature and play. The landscaping part of the project was complex, involving careful management of existing trees and plants of which their roots had grown over existing tarmac, and the creation of new accessible pathways, seating, and shade. The centre piece of the project was a self supporting Treehouse library.
This unique structure, hand built on site over several months, was specifically designed to provide sanctuary for children with neurodiversity and for those that may struggle in conventional school environments. Cosy child scaled nooks were designed within the structure - from a window seat for one, to a loft nook for 3 to allow children to read and relax after choosing books from the main library room. The second room is large enough for teaching, and has many shelves for resources. Wide, shallow steps, balustraded in individually shaped hardwood branches allow staff supported access for the less mobile. An additional treehouse ladder ensures two exit points to reduce trapping or bullying behavior. The design of the cladding creates a sense of privacy and security for the children, while allowing sightlines for staff safe guarding.
Beneath this structure is custom storage for a loose parts construction area, with hammock attachment points and building materials. This project also involved huge amounts of planting, the creation of raised beds, a reclaimed aggregate gabion shady bench seat 25 meters long, and a new hedge line along the perimeter of the playground for biodiversity, and the planting of 20 trees- up to 4 m high!

Client

Canonbury Primary school

Date

Summer 2023

Location

Islington, London

Client

Canonbury Primary school

Date

Summer 2023

Location

Islington, London
The brief for this landscaping project for a friendly Islington school was improving access for the children to an unused area of the grounds for learning, nature and play. The landscaping part of the project was complex, involving careful management of existing trees and plants of which their roots had grown over existing tarmac, and the creation of new accessible pathways, seating, and shade. The centre piece of the project was a self supporting Treehouse library.
This unique structure, hand built on site over several months, was specifically designed to provide sanctuary for children with neurodiversity and for those that may struggle in conventional school environments. Cosy child scaled nooks were designed within the structure - from a window seat for one, to a loft nook for 3 to allow children to read and relax after choosing books from the main library room. The second room is large enough for teaching, and has many shelves for resources. Wide, shallow steps, balustraded in individually shaped hardwood branches allow staff supported access for the less mobile. An additional treehouse ladder ensures two exit points to reduce trapping or bullying behavior. The design of the cladding creates a sense of privacy and security for the children, while allowing sightlines for staff safe guarding.
Beneath this structure is custom storage for a loose parts construction area, with hammock attachment points and building materials. This project also involved huge amounts of planting, the creation of raised beds, a reclaimed aggregate gabion shady bench seat 25 meters long, and a new hedge line along the perimeter of the playground for biodiversity, and the planting of 20 trees- up to 4 m high!
Side view of self supporting multi coloured Treehouse Library Made From Scratch