Type: Adaption and Conversion to New MuseumCompletion: 2011Awards:
2012 Michelmores - Winner - Project of the Year for under £3m
2012 LABC Finalist - Best Community Building
2012 DBC - Winner of Best Commercial/Public Building
The design approach follows the fundamental ethos of the museum – a place where objects that were once contemporary and very much of their time are displayed. The new building is unapologetically ‘modern’ but also sensitive to the surrounding historic townscape, being polite to its neighbours and harmonious with the setting whilst having individual character. This was achieved by reflecting key features from the town, such as Georgian facades of stucco render, bold parapets with set back roofs, but reinterpreting them into a appropriate contemporary form.
Providing much needed space was a key physical requirement but in social terms creating a community meeting place, an educational centre of excellence and a focal point for this valuable heritage site were key drivers. Although the site faced technical difficulties, being on the corner of the main arterial road through the town, this provided an opportunity to create a landmark, quality, iconic building with its original awkward site shape leading to the dynamic form of the new building.