A Place for Everyone
A HEMP BUILD COMMUNITY PROJECT IN A CHURCHYARD
A FLEXIBLE AND SUSTAINABLE BUILDING DESIGNED TO PROMOTE SOCIAL INTERACTION AND MINIMISE ENERGY CONSUMPTION. THE 4C PAVILION IS THE UK'S FIRST COMMUNITY BUILDING TO BE CONSTRUCTED FROM HEMP.
The 4C pavilion is a new community centre situated in the tree-lined grounds of Christ Church, a grade two listed church in Ashton-under-Lyne, near Manchester. The building forms a threshold between a quiet churchyard and the Oldham Road and frames a new landscaped public space behind the church. A key ambition was to create a very simple, friendly building with a human scale that related to its urban situation and which would complement the activities of the church.
The design has been developed in close collaboration with the local community and takes inspiration from its context. The form and height of the pavilion are carefully designed to appear to match the profile of the terraced houses nearby and has been slightly sunk into the sloping site to reduce its height and create a more intimate connection to the landscape. A large, single window to the east provides a view of the cafe to passers-by, motorists and people waiting at the adjacent bus stop.
Natural materials have been used for the pavilion’s construction, which will allow the fabric of the building to “breathe” and promote a healthy internal environment. The roof is covered with local wildflowers and sedum grasses and the walls covered in an earth coloured soft lime render, which is tinted to echo the church. A large array of photovoltaic panels on the roof will generate electricity for export to the grid and a biomass boiler will provide heating for the pavilion and the church.
The thick walls are made from hemp and will “lock up” nearly 20 tonnes of carbon dioxide. Hemp provides good thermal mass and a very stable internal environment – helping to avoid peaks and troughs of temperature and humidity and simplifying the construction detailing. All windows and doors are triple glazed in order to create a thermally comfortable and quiet interior.
A special feature of the building are the “E-stacks” – special ventilation chimneys which create a distinctive rhythm to the roof, echo the chimneys on the rows of terraced houses and bring fresh air into the building. This is mixed with warm outgoing air generated by the building users and helps reduce energy consumption in winter.
Internally, the pavilion contains a community cafe, multi-purpose hall, wc’s, teaching spaces and offices. The hall and cafe are focused around a large open plan kitchen which forms the social core of the building and promotes the idea of staff and volunteers mixing with visitors.
The exterior of the project is complete and the interior due to be completed shortly.
CLIENT: 4C Community Developments