KESWICK

Client : Keswick Museum and Art Gallery Trust
Location : Keswick

The aspiration for the Keswick Museum & Art Gallery was to redevelop the building into a modern centre for arts and culture, redefining the interpretation of the existing museum collection and providing space and facilities for display, exhibition and artistic activity. In addition, the building was to be served by a new cafe looking out across Fitz Park and a street level reception area that projects out from the existing building line to signal the changed fortunes of the site.
Lee Boyd prepared proposals to RIBA Stage C, working closely with the Client team to maximize the potential of the existing spaces within the constraints of budget and period fabric. Whilst the essential character of the building was retained, contemporary intervention was also proposed to allow the building to respond to current and future needs and most importantly meet visitor expectation for such a facility. The modern new entrance extension provided a clear symbol that things have changed in the building and permit inclusive entry into the heart of the reorganized plan. As part of our development, we worked with conservation consultants to establish the parameters for the upgrading of the existing fabric and to provide an understanding of the heritage value of the building and its collection.
As part of the study we also met with the conservation advisor at the National Parks Authority, whose response to the aspiration and the proposal was very favourable. It was agreed that the contemporary approach to extending the building was sufficiently sensitive to avoid conflict with the essential Arts and Crafts character of the building.
One of the key challenges of this project was the integration of modern museum and gallery standard services such as lighting, environmental control and zoning into the finite existing spaces. Although this was not addressed in detail at Stage C, it is understood as one of the more complex parts of the scope.