Designing the Hub
As part of the second round application to Heritage Lottery Fund, the Architects and Interpretation Designers produced the RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects) stage 3 design schemes.
These designs were submitted for planning permission, with the Planning Committee meeting in January 2018 and granting both planning permission and listed building consent.
More information about the Royal British Institute of Architects, can be found here.
Key developments to the site will include:
- Provision of Pottery and Silver-smithing facilities into the main C&LH building
- Removal of two huts at back of site
- Removal of curved wall on ground floor to extend out
- Double story glass atrium offering window into the building between Museum & Library building and Adult Education building
- Double story extension at back of site for temporary exhibition space and local studies and archive
- Courtyard garden
The design team
Purcell, an award-winning firm of architects and historic building consultants, were announced as lead architects for the project following a competitive process. Purcell has 13 offices around the UK and has extensive experience in the heritage and cultural field, including the £36.5m Sammy Ofer wing of the National Maritime Museum.
Metaphor have been appointed as Interpretation Designers to work with Purcell and bring the proposed new hub to life - ensuring that the building tells the ‘stories’ of Tunbridge Wells, and has the right flow, look and feel.
Purcell and the team designing the Hub are progressing well with the proposals. The first stages of the project have seen the team finding out about the buildings and the people who use them. This has included the history of the buildings and the site, the condition of the existing buildings and how they function. Purcell have been developing initial ideas in response to the vision of the project, “to create a building that provides an excellent visitor experience for all, is of high quality architectural design and a destination building, and acts as a catalyst for the regeneration of Tunbridge Wells as a cultural destination”.
At the heart of the design ideas for the Hub will be an open shared central space used for the interaction of all the services provided. These services include a space to promote local heritage as well as inclusive and inspirational gallery spaces. Alongside the galleries will be the Library and Adult Education Centre, building and improving on the successful backgrounds of both. There will also be a Café, Support Space, Tourist Information, Registration and Gateway services.
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