Warwick Hall Community Centre

Warwick Hall Community Centre

Architect
Acanthus Clews Architects
Location
Burford, Oxfordshire, UK | View Map
Project Year
2017
Category
Community Centres
Andy Marshall

Warwick Hall Community Centre

Acanthus Clews Architects as Architects

St.John the Baptist Church in Burford undertook a bold new redevelopment project at Warwick Hall to unite the church and local community through the building of a new community facility.  

photo_credit Andy Marshall
Andy Marshall

The brief was to sensitively but substantially extend and adapt the listed building to provide a new hall flexible enough to meet the wide ranging needs of today’s end users. The challenge was to deliver a new confident community facility within one of the most historically sensitive church building settings in the Cotswolds.  

photo_credit Andy Marshall
Andy Marshall

The design ethos was to reaffirm the significance of the original range by removing later extensions and to then rebuild in a manner that respected this unique setting.  To minimise the impact of these new facilities the massing is split into a cluster of smaller structures expressed and clearly separated from the original Hall.  These solid stone elements protrude sensitively from behind the churchyard wall but are set back to allow the Warwick Hall gable and churchyard wall to dominate the boundary.  A clearer hierarchy of old and new is generated.

photo_credit Andy Marshall
Andy Marshall

Access is relocated to the heart of the building to provide level access and allows the old hall to return to its original proportions.  By re-orientating the building towards the churchyard a new dialogue between the church and the Warwick Hall is created.  

photo_credit Andy Marshall
Andy Marshall

Traditional materials are fundamental but these textures are complemented with contemporary structural glazing and zinc cladding, and detailed in a manner to ensure the building reflects its use and expresses its inclusivity.  A ground source heat pump heating and cooling system for the building reduces energy consumption.

photo_credit Andy Marshall
Andy Marshall

Described by the Bishop of Dorchester as this communities ‘gift’ to Burford the building is unashamedly of its time but crucially sits comfortably within what must be one of the most picturesque churchyards in the country.

photo_credit Andy Marshall
Andy Marshall

Conservation Statement
Warwick Hall is a listed parish hall and a former C15th residence.  It is located alongside the Grade 1 listed St.John the Baptist in Burford and butts against the Grade 2* listed Great Almshouses.  The site is very likely to be the heart of the Saxon settlement on the edge of the current town and as such is historically complex.  This is further complicated by the fact that the site comes under both ecclesiastic faculty jurisdiction as well as the local planning system. 

photo_credit Andy Marshall
Andy Marshall

The conservation strategy involved the removal of C20th extensions, internal partitions and cement render to express the original range of the hall from the new facilities.  The new building then becomes another clear layer of built history, enhancing it rather than competing with it.  Extensive stonework, lime mortar and natural stone roofing repairs were required as well as lead window repairs and stone cleaning throughout.

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Material Used:
1. External materials – Natural Limestone – OG Stonemasonry 
2. Structural glazing – IQ Glass
3. Zinc metal roofing - Rheinzink
4. Timber floor – Junckers 

Project Credits
Product Spec Sheet

ElementBrand
Timber floor Junckers
Zinc metal roofingRHEINZINK
Structural glazingIQ Glass UK
Product Spec Sheet
Timber floor
Zinc metal roofing
Structural glazing
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