Martin Arnold Ltd were invited by the Vale of White Horse District Council to participate in the exciting opportunity to design White Horse Leisure Centre expansion along-side the Centre’s Operator, Greenwich Leisure Limited.

The key design challenge of the project was to achieve the right balance between the amount and the scale whilst using the appropriate material which would complement the shape of the proposal, provide canvas for locally created artwork allowing for deeper connection with the local area, and to put a clear emphasis on the main entrance area which appeared to be lost within the volume of the existing building.

Once the amount, scale and the shape of the proposed extension was established, the choice of Profilit glazing – which due to its nature (narrow steps of glass of up to 7m long) could provide defused natural light and a certain level of privacy whilst potentially serving as an ‘art canvass’ – seemed very obvious.

The ’extraction’ of the main entrance was achieved by the use of still structure canopy providing – apart from signposting’ of the entrance – shading, as well as the frame for the locally designed and crafted artwork which takes advantage of natural light which filters through leaving ‘coloured footsteps’ on the ground.

  • Client

    Vale of White Horse District Council / Greenwich Leisure Limited

  • Contractor

    Francis Construction

  • Contract Value

    £1,200,000

  • Duration

    14 months

  • Address

    Abingdon, Oxfordshire OX14 3PJ

Added value:

  • contemporary design solution resulting in enhanced appearance / ‘new face’ of the leisure centre
  • high quality additional floor space for gym enthusiasts
  • clearly defined main entrance area emphasised by the new canopy incorporating locally designed and crafted art work
  • improved internal facilities including existing gym space, changing rooms and creche
  • prime outcome achieved within budget and time constraints

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