When your mother and father are both teachers (Dad, Stephen, is now a Professor: Chair of Learning Innovation at UCJC in Madrid as well as Emeritus Professor at both Bournemouth and Anglia Ruskin Universities) you grow up where teaching and learning is the very stuff of family conversation around the dinner table.
Your childhood is surrounded by lesson plans and talk is about the desire to improve the lot of the next generation. So it’s hardly surprising that Co-Founder, Juliette Heppell (as well as her sister, Melissa) went on to become a teacher as well. As Head of PSHE at the outstanding, teaching school Lampton Academy, Juliette led a group of students who went on to win the ‘I dream of learning’ competition run by Feltham CLC, awarded £30,000 to create their own dream learning space which they did in two portacabins sat under the flight path to Heathrow Airport.
Never believing that great learning comes from sitting ram-rod straight at rows of tables facing a teacher, Juliette has long held a desire to create a collection of affordable learning-centric furniture to support more dynamic and agile approaches to delivering the curriculum.
Since qualifying with a degree in Furniture Design from Ravensbourne, Managing Director James Clarke has been designing spaces that support the activities that go on in them, the last fifteen of which has been specialising in learning environments.
Working with some of the most prestigious establishments in the world, his only regret was that much of that work he completed was not accessible, by virtue of cost, to very many schools and colleges. James has served as a school governor, chairing the Teaching & Learning committee, and has worked extensively with teachers and lecturers both in the state and independent sector, from primary through to universities.
Having known, and worked with Juliette over a number of years, together they set about designing a portfolio of products, detailed to be manufactured as cheaply as possible, and distributed in a manner where any cost that could be, had been removed.
Together with leading furniture manufacturer, Spaceoasis, they created a business to bring that to schools. That’s who we are. Who we are not, however, is either School Outfitters in America or Reed Furniture in Australia, both of whom own the brand name Learniture® in their respective countries. The Learniture® products you see on this website are only currently available in the UK, mainland Europe and Scandinavia.