The Weald & Downland Living Museum
The creation of a new Visitor Centre including exhibition space, gift shop, café and flexible community spaces, centred around the existing mill pond to create a gateway into the museum grounds. The scheme was awarded Heritage Lottery Funding. Construction cost £3.6m. Completed 2017. RIBA Stages 0-7.
The Museum is set within the beautiful South Downs National Park and houses an internationally recognised collection of over fifty historically important buildings spanning from the 13th to the 20th centuries, each of which have been relocated to the museum grounds to save them from demolition or a state of disrepair.
The scheme is separated into two distinct clusters on either side of a central public gathering space which extends from the museum entrance to the edge of the mill-pond. The concept for each cluster is based around a traditional farm-sted cluster arrangement. The Gateway is a threshold between the 21st century and the past times and life-styles found within the museum.
The scheme aims to reflect the ethos of the museum by celebrating the evolution of timber-framed and timber-clad architecture, as well as show-casing the advances made in timber construction methods in modern times, therefore embodying both the present and the past simultaneously in the very fabric of the building.
The proposed construction consists of a substantial element of green oak framing to the ‘anchor’ elements which sit either side of the central meeting space. Cross-laminated timber panels form most of the building’s remaining structure, reducing the carbon footprint both in material choice and by utilising off-site manufacturing methods.
RICS South East Awards 2019, Shortlisted
South Downs National Park Design Awards, Non-Residential, Highly Commended
RIBA South East Awards 2018, Shortlisted
Sussex Heritage Trust Awards, Commercial Award, Winner
Offsite Awards 2018 Commercial Project of the Year, Shortlisted
Structural Timber Awards 2017
Sussex Heritage Trust Awards, Building Crafts Award, Winner