More about Sand’s End
Located on the edge of the park, the new centre sits adjacent to the 1903 Lodge which is a key marker signalling arrival into the park. The exterior timber faïence detailing and the roof are distinctive of London park buildings from this date. Therefore, Mæ retained the lodge building, repurposing it as an art space, around which the new additions are threaded, forming a series of new internal and external experiences.
The additions were designed to be secondary to the lodge, with a scale and massing which creates an ensemble of forms that frame the view of the existing lodge from both the street and within the park.
The triangular roof forms reference glasshouse structures formerly sited in South Park and at Fulham Palace that Mæ unearthed from the archives. Clerestory glazing also adds to this effect drawing light in from above the existing Victorian perimeter wall without detracting from it.
A series of new public spaces were created alongside the Arts and Community Centre, laid out in sequence from street to park. Each space has its own distinct and intimate character.
The landscaping design took inspiration from exotic nurseries and the former horticultural use of the site, where structure and landscape were closely intertwined.
When first users arrive at the entrance yard, this is a moment of orientation defining the transition from the street into the welcoming environment of the new centre and the park beyond. From there, the progression is into a lobby at the heart of the centre, which connects the cafe, common room, hall and other facilities.
The Lodge courtyard and terracing is the third part of the journey, providing outdoor seating adjacent to the new cafe. New trees, wildlife garden areas, vertical planting, hedges and habitat walls will create dappled shade and enhance local biodiversity.
Along this route, a mixture of brick pavers and gravel unifies surfaces within the site and the park beyond, while aiding a sustainable drainage strategy.
The interior materiality is driven by the image of the kinds of lightweight structures which enclose glasshouses, reinforcing the idea that the additions are designed to be secondary to the lodge.
The use of an expressed timber roof construction gives a natural lightness to the space. These interior spaces are lit by large North facing clerestory glazing to give a consistent light environment for internal activities.
Internally, the use of timber exposed timber structure and envelope reinforces the sustainable agenda behind the project while giving a highly tactile quality to the space.