Lendlease’s Burntwood School project in Wandsworth has been awarded the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Stirling Prize – the UK’s most prestigious architectural accolade.

Designed by Allford Hall Monaghan Morris (AHMM), the £50 million Burntwood School rebuild and refurbishment was managed and co-ordinated by contractor Lendlease and completed in September 2014. The project championed a sustainable transformation of the original 1950s school site in south-west London and now offers students an engaging environment in which to study. The six striking buildings within the re-designed campus boast faceted concrete exteriors, colourful geometric-tile detailing and spacious classrooms filled with natural light.

The RIBA prize, which was founded in 1996, recognises an outstanding contribution to the evolution of architecture over the past year. In a close collaboration between Lendlease and AHMM, the new campus design was one of the last schools of New Labour’s Building Schools for the Future programme and marks a culmination of Lendlease’s diverse ten-year involvement with AHMM.

Previous laureates of the coveted Stirling Prize include Foster and Partners for 30 St Mary Axe (the Gherkin) in 2004 and David Chipperfield Architects for the Museum of Modern Literature, Germany in 2007. Burntwood School beat off stiff competition for the 2015 prize, with Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners’ NEO Bankside, MUMA’s The Whitworth University of Manchester and Neil McLaughlin Architects’ Peabody apartment building Darbishire Place also shortlisted.

The RIBA judges noted Burntwood’s ‘quality, openness, confidence and solidity’ and were particularly impressed with the project’s mature aesthetic and fusion of new cast-concrete spaces and original 1950s structures – two of which were designed by Sir Leslie Martin – retained on the campus.

Dan Labbad, Chief Executive Officer, International Operations at Lendlease, said: “We are delighted that RIBA has recognised Burntwood School’s progressive design, which ultimately achieves its key purpose of providing a wonderful learning environment for students. It has been a pleasure working with AHMM to deliver this cutting-edge project.”

Paul Monaghan, Director of Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, said: “Schools can and should be more than just practical, functional buildings – they need to elevate the aspirations of children, teachers and the wider community. Good school design makes a difference to the way students value themselves and their education, and we hope that Burntwood winning the Stirling Prize shows that this is worth investing in.”


Burntwood School is a girls’ secondary school and sixth form with academy status, located in WandsworthLondon. In 2014 a £50 million project to revitalise the original 1950s campus and build a series of new educational buildings, serving up to 2000 pupils and over 200 staff, was completed. The scheme was developed by the architects AHMM, who worked in close partnership with LendleaseWandsworth Borough Council and Burntwood School. It provided a new integrated campus consisting of four four-storey teaching pavilions, a new sports hall and a new performing arts building.