Langley Vale Visitor Centre Competition

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Competition entry for a visitors centre for Langley Vale Centenary Wood. Located on a high point of the large site, the building is an orientation point when visitors walk from the car park. On one side the trees are to be planted right up to the building while on the other there are clear views over the woods and fields to the London skyline. The proposal is for a single slightly sloping roof with rooflights supported on a web of interlocking timber trusses on 'leg' columns. Looking up the columns from below should be like looking up the trunk of a tree into the canopy of branches. The columns are to be wrapped in zinc vertically embossed with the commemorative names of donors: a visual reference to the links the site has with army training in World War 1. Under the canopy roof are a series of timber clad accommodation boxes for an office, toilets and a community room. The latter has large shutter doors that can be folded back in good weather to make the room more of a pavillion next to a raised terrace and picnic steps that look out over the long views.