Fawaz AlAbbasi

Seaweed Construction Lab

Seaweed is a natural product with incredible properties that is starting to be utilised increasingly in today’s climate; with local offshore farms beginning to sprout up in Cornwall, the Par Horticultural Seaweed Centre is both a processing plant for horticultural seaweed products and a community space for locals and tourists alike. While distributing these amazing products across the country it was also important to ensure that the project also gave back to the community, with spaces for events, a beautiful garden to enjoy and tourist attractions to experience; bringing people together in Cornwall and providing a new route for income in one of the most impoverished counties in England. Each “wing” of the dock represents the two areas of both ‘production’ and ‘community,’ combining in their use and processing of seaweed.  

As Seaweed is establishing itself as a super crop of the future, most notably for being used in food, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals etc. it is worth testing its ability to influence the construction sector as we search for environmentally friendly alternatives and turn the construction industry into a circular economy. This building is used as a construction material testing and manufacturing facility, where the public are able to visit, interact and learn more about new construction materials that can be made using seaweed. These include sheep wool bricks, Polymer Modified Concrete and Alginate GO (Alternative to steel).  


The testing centre is frequently toured by visiting academics and students eager to meet with researchers and to catch a glimpse of the latest research projects. Spaces for presentations, exhibitions, installations, and balconies overlooking the various processes are located around the central atrium offering opportunities for the public to engage with the processes and research conducted at the Seaweed Construction lab.   

Introduced in the heart of Reading Town, Hogmanay, the Scottish celebration of New Years, brings a large infusion of culture and festivity to the local area. Cock-a-Leekie soup, being an integral cuisine of the Scottish, accompanies the festivities. The influx of Hogmanay culture, introduced by the arrival of the Soup Facility, will indulge Reading in a host of traditions that seek to bring people together to celebrate the New Year and the fresh start that follows midnight. On New Year’s Eve in Readingthe public are invited to join in the activitiesincluding; farming the ingredients for the soup, trying the soup, setting Juniper branches alight at midnight, Ceilidh dancing, drinking homemade Gin, and the chance to watch as the chefs produce the soup from raw ingredients on site.  

Cock a Leekie , Scotland, Timber, Homemade, Feathers, New years