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Recreational Projects

A Lake Side Visitor Centre, Northamptonshire

The brief on this project was to create an exciting elegant building, making use of the lakes, dealing with the flooding issue and achieving carbon neutrality.

Timber construction was used throughout, as it is sustainable. The roof coverings are a mixture of slate and a semi intensive green roof. The building has a fully glazed end overlooking the lakes with a mezzanine floor to provide exhibition and extended café space as well as an external timber deck beyond that reaches far into the lake.

As the site was a former gravel pit which had been back-filled, a piled foundation had to be adopted with a ground floor level one metre above ground level with a void beneath to allow for flooding that occurs on a fairly regular basis.

The building is scheduled for completion early in 2009, and appears to have achieved all of the client objectives. It has generated considerable interest from visitors to the site during construction and is expected to be a popular and successful attraction when opened.

Lake Side Visitor Centre 01 Lake Side Visitor Centre 02 Lake Side Visitor Centre 03
Lake Side Visitor Centre 04 Lake Side Visitor Centre 05 Lake Side Visitor Centre 06
Lake Side Visitor Centre 07 Lake Side Visitor Centre 08

Extension to Visitor Centre, Brandon, Norfolk

The existing visitor centre was quite small and, as well as providing additional space, the building had to be interesting and welcoming in order to attract more visitors to the centre. The main function of the extension was to provide a café area which could cater for a good number of visitors at any one time and being suitable as a multi function area. This had to link with the existing building constructed some twenty years earlier.

The main extension was circular with a conical roof. It was engineered to achieve an area without columns, whereas the original concept suggested that three to four internal columns would be necessary to support the roof, which would have greatly restricted how the space could be used. The building was constructed in timber with an exposed timber ceiling which also acts as a structural deck to the roof giving an interesting, exciting and very versatile space which has delighted visitors and satisfied the client.

    Visitor Centre 01

Visitor Centre, Chafford Hundred, Essex

The brief for this project was to create an interesting sustainable building which would give excellent views over the gorge. The soil beneath the building was engineered fill and the building had to sit close to the edge of the gorge with a viewing deck cantilevering out beyond. The foundations were designed to take account of these factors and the building was constructed entirely of timber frame with exposed Glulam beams for the main roof.

The building is well used by the general public and for educational purposes, and the client is delighted with the building.

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