There has been a complete overhaul of the central areas and activities at the school beginning with the refurbishment of St John and Faber (2001/2), the new build of FitzAlan and Norris (2002 – 2006), and then the renovation/construction of all the teaching departments and the upgrade of St Philip (2001-2011). Like the Houses, some were ‘new build’: History (2001), Design Technology (2003), Art and Design (2008) and Maths, English, Theology, Curriculum Support (2008-10). All others have been stripped down, fully refurbished and re-kitted.
The ‘jewel in the Crown’ for this decade was the Old Chapel (rededicated as St Joseph’s in 2004). This 350 year-old tithe barn, partially restored into a small Chapel and storage area in the 1990s, was completely renovated to become a very lovely place of peace and faith.
The whole school site has been re-fenced, re-planted and re-sited, with ancillary staff (Maintenance and Grounds) re-housed in a new depot (2003). New gardens, have been dug and constructed. A statue of our Patron (St Philip) and a renovated Marian Shrine with Bath stone altar have highlighted the Catholic nature of the school (2011). A CCF Memorial Garden has been created and dedicated to those Old Oratorians who have fallen in battle since World War II.
A new ‘cutting edge’ Performing Arts Centre was opened in 2013, with separate Drama Workshop, retractable tiered seating, high-tech acoustics and an acting space that can be utilised for other school activities.
The latest development was the Sports Centre, which experienced a major £5 million rebuild, with the main Sports Hall area completely face-lifted with a new floor, renovated ergo room, new cricket nets and basketball frames. The second phase included a massive new build with revamped squash courts, modern changing rooms, an iconic 25 metre swimming pool with covering and café reception area. There is also an upstairs gym, for boys’ use only and a lovely function room above the indoor pool with a verandah overlooking the grass tennis courts.
The School is constantly seeking to maintain its position at the forefront of UK boys’ education through an ever revolving development programme.