Pallikoodam – school near Kottayam

I recently came across an article that spoke about a school in Kerala, designed by the eminent architect, the late Laurie Baker.

Originally from England, Laurie Baker settled down in Kerala, finally becoming an Indian citizen in 1988. He received numerous awards in his lifetime, including a Padma Shri and a nomination for the Pritzker Prize. His style was to incorporate local elements to design buildings in an environmentally sustainable fashion.

I hadn’t realised, though, that one of his works included a school. Reading further, it turns out that the school was started by Mary Roy, a social activist who, incidentally, is also the mother of famous author, Arundhati Roy.

Interestingly, one of the conditions that Laurie Baker imposed while agreeing to the project, was that Mary should admit his daughter into the school!

Photos on the school’s website reveal structures with a red-brick frontage. They have numerous small holes to let air and light in, a typical Laurie Baker design.

Located near Kottayam town in Southern Kerala, this is a little know piece of architecture that might be worth checking out if you are in the region.

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