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© Mr J J Sheridan LRPS

IoE Number: 217806
Photographer: Mr J J Sheridan LRPS
Date Photographed: 03 September 2000
Date listed: 08 July 1982
Date of last amendment: 08 July 1982
Grade II

The Images of England website consists of images of listed buildings based on the statutory list as it was in 2001 and does not incorporate subsequent amendments to the list. For the statutory list and information on the current listed status of individual buildings please go to The National Heritage List for England.

WHITEHEAD ROAD5104Aston B6The BroadwayComprehensive School

WHITEHEAD ROAD 1. 5104 Aston B6 The Broadway Comprehensive School SP 08 NE 7/91 II 2. A very richly modelled design for a Board School. Principally buff terracotta with red brick, combining English Baroque theme with Art Nouveau rather than Birmingham Arts and Crafts, decorative sculptural detailing. The main block, the central hall, is of 5 bays on a tall basement flanked by Girls and Boys entrances bridging the area. Extending out behind are 2 storey and basement wings with 3 storey octagonal towers. The hall block has a steeply pitched hipped slate roof with small mannered Baroque oeuil de boeuf dormers. A giant Roman Doric order, all of terracotta, articulates the hall elevation. Engaged columns in antis with projecting double columned centrepiece surmounted by segmental pediment. Blocking to lower parts of column shafts. Ornate console bracketed terracotta eaves cornice. Behind the pediment is a bland terracotta attic crowned by octagonal, columned cupola. Rusticated terracotta is carried down into basement. Tall windows occupy virtually the full width of the inter columniations with thin terracotta architraves, south work in friezes and moulded cornices topped by small round vents. Centre has larger archivolt arched window. Partially encroaching on this elevation are the 2 entrance arches, far more Art Nouveau in design, all of terracotta with entasised corner turrets blending into gables over deep voussoired archways, their surrounds merging in turn into the parapets bridging the area and flanking the steps. The arch drip moulds flow from "Rococo" cartouches, on turrets, vested by 3 very naturalistically modelled children's heads in high relief. The drip moulds rise to delicate female head keystones, the hair flowing out to form cartouches and crests. The set back wings of red brick have terracotta banding. The 3 storey octagonal turrets have lavish terracotta dressings to top stage with Art Nouveau consoles to the angles below eaves of shallow lead dormers crowned by bellcots. Plain brick terracotta banded side elevations have large Diocletian windows below approximately central gables. The basement level on west side has side entrance with heavy terracotta arched cornice hood encasing egg shaped light above remarkable shallow relief modelling of semi-circular archway with head keystone, the pair merging once again into free flowing cartouche. The rear elevation principally brick with terracotta dressings and distinguished from front by a series of gables, the theme of ogee Diocletians being repeated from sides. A small but distinctive detail are the Art Nouveau terracotta brick vents pierced by ovoid "bone" framed apertures. The siting of the school across the tangent between 2 streets heightens the tension of the composition.

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