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10 COMMENT


The designs of new schools in Scotland are testament to this; not only fire protected by sprinklers but also sustainable, as Lindsey Mitchell, architect and a director at BDP’s Glasgow Studio explains, referring to a recent project in Fife. “In Waid Academy in Anstruther, BDP designed and delivered a community school project that included a high school, police station, library and a community hub. We applied a sustainable approach to design on the project, and a recent report tracking energy use since it opened demonstrates the building is working within the SFT LEIP targets – which were not considered at that time. In a time where there is a heightened need to take learning out of the classroom, the use of sustainable, educational buildings and landscape is vital for varied, creative teaching methods. A sustainable campus provides a positive legacy for local authorities and demonstrates their commitment to providing a sustainable community environment.”


As well as allowing design freedom for greater open plan spaces


in Waid Academy, the inclusion of automatic fire sprinklers make the school more sustainable in the long term. The decision to fit sprinklers into all new built schools in Scotland in 2010 was made against a background of increasing fire losses of school buildings across the country and an ambitious plan by the Government to build a sustainable school building portfolio. Architects are key to this building programme, with flexible multi use designs which are both inspirational and practical and do ensure that the structures meet the SFT LEIP standards together


As well as allowing design freedom for greater open plan spaces in Waid Academy, the inclusion of automatic fire sprinklers make the school more sustainable in the long term


with being sustainable against fires and fire losses. It is not just the loss of the structure that makes it unsustainable following a fire, it is the amount of gases that are released into the atmosphere during a fire, together with the contaminated runoff from the water used by the fire and rescue services and the cost of keeping fire appliances running and detaining Firefighters on site while damping down after a major fire, the rebuild cost and energy is only part of the equation. In conclusion, we support fitting sprinklers in all new build schools in England and Northern Ireland, and are advocating sprinklers to be mandatory in the Review of BB100 (Design Guide for Fire Safety in Schools).


Keith MacGillivray is the chief executive of the British Automatic Fire Sprinkler Association


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ADF JUNE 2021


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