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South Shields Community SchoolBuilding Bulletin 93 (BB 93) brought acoustic conditions in schools under Part E of The Building Regulations in 2003. The acoustic environment is of paramount importance in the learning process, as so much teaching is still delivered aurally.

With extensive experience of designing and testing in more than 75 primary schools, more than 30 secondary schools and more than 25 higher education projects, Apex Acoustics is committed developing the best environmental conditions for schools, including the interdependence of acoustic and ventilation design.

As the Education Funding Agency (EFA) squeezes school building budgets tighter, the integration of the acoustic strategy with other environmental design factors – such as exposed soffits for thermal mass and openings for natural ventilation – is even more critical, because all are interconnected.
Apex Acoustics Director Jack Harvie-Clark chaired the Association of Noise Consultants’ committee that wrote the Acoustic Testing of Schools, as referenced in BB 93, and sat on the committee that re-wrote BB 93. Jack has recently coordinated the design guidance published jointly by the ANC and IOA to accompany the performance standards in BB 93.

Apex provides advice on all aspects of BB 93 to meet Building Regulations, including site layout, facade acoustic and ventilation strategies, room planning, construction type, wall and floor details and surface finishes. We also distinguish between performance standards required by BB 93, and guidance to ensure the acoustic conditions that users may expect.

Apex has been active in carrying out research into acoustic conditions in school environments, and regularly presents this ongoing research at national and international conferences. See shaping the future for more details.

Recent projects include:

  • North East batch 2 – 12 schools for Galliford Try
  • Multi-award winning City Campus East – Northumbria University
  • Newcastle Schools PFI testing – Sir Robert McAlpine
  • Gateshead Schools PFI testing – Sir Robert McAlpine
  • Durham High School for Girls – Devereux Architects
  • Durham Johnston Secondary School – GB Building
  • Beacon Hill Special School, North Tyneside – North Tyneside Council
  • Hetton Lyons Primary School, Sunderland – Sunderland City Council
  • Gateshead SureStart – Gateshead MBC
  • Transport House, Newcastle University – Faulkner Brown Architects
  • Dixons City Academy, Bradford – Devereux Architects
    Sacred Heart High School, Newcastle upon Tyne – Miller Construction
  • Hummersknott Comprehensive, Darlington – Space Architects
  • Stockton College, Stockton – Space Architects
  • Bede College, Billingham – Space Architects
  • St Peg Lane, Cleckheaton, Kirklees – Morgan Sindall
  • Goldenhill Primary School, Glasgow – Ryder Architects
  • Bonhill Primary School, Glasgow – Ryder Architects
  • Mortimer Primary School, South Tyneside – South Tyneside Council
  • Northumbria University Sports Hall, Newcastle – Atkins Design
Apex Acoustics Ltd Design Works, William St, Gateshead, Tyne and Wear NE10 0JP Head office: 0191 620 0750 Midlands: 0115 708 0750

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