Edinburgh Academy

The Edinburgh Academy, a leading Scottish school, has welcomed students and challenged educational thinking since 1824.

Approaching its bicentennial, it continues to embrace innovative approaches to teaching and learning to prepare students for all the opportunities that lie ahead. With their strapline ‘Grounded in Scotland, ready for the world’ – the architecture, both traditional and modern, embody that.

“We are really impressed with the design and the quality of the furniture from Spaceoasis and Learniture and we’ve enjoyed the process of working with them. They are on the same page as us when it comes to the clever use of space and doing things differently, rather than simply doing what’s always been done.”

Barry Welsh, Edinburgh Academy’s Rector.

Clever Use Of Space

Rising pupil numbers with an expanding passion for science, coupled with changes in learning and teaching required the school to explore new and different ways of doing things.

Approaching its bicentennial, it continues to embrace innovative approaches to teaching and learning to prepare students for all the opportunities that lie ahead. With their strapline ‘Grounded in Scotland, ready for the world’ – the architecture, both traditional and modern, embody that.

Being housed within the conservation area of Edinburgh, and the need for empathy towards the environs provided an interesting and exciting architectural challenge. The design had to meet the strict rules on height and rooflines and could not expand on the original footprint. The Eric Stevenson Learning Commons, designed by LDN Architects with interiors by Spaceoasis, opened in March 2023.

It was constructed on what was a car park and cleverly and sympathetically connects both the existing science block and original Library. This new building consists of three spaces on the ground floor: the Dow Studio, a multi-functional blank canvas learning space; the Fraser Reading Room, which leads to an outdoor patio and offers a quiet extension to both the original Library and the main space; the Le Roux Auditorium, which can be used for assemblies, presentations, exams and concerts. Upstairs there are two further, light-filled science labs.