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.
Kelp Works is sited on a former and future industrial site. The legacy left by the clay mining industry at Par creates the opportunity to spark new commerce and local interest in sustainable fishing, farming and agriculture.
At its broadest scale, Kelp Works is a plant food production centre, producing organic ‘kelp meal’ from seaweed harvested off the Cornish coast. The project is perfectly positioned as a platform to spread awareness about the emerging potential of seaweed. It is a space for research, education and collaboration with multiple presentation and meeting spaces throughout the building.
From seaweed to plant food
Seaweed has appeared as a key component of food, feed, and medicine since ancient times. The potential of seaweed plant food and soil conditioners offers significant environmental and social prosperity which could help address climate change as well as food and energy security.
The unique topography of the surrounding landscape is dominated by the legacy of the clay mining industry. The rainwater collection pools at Kelp Works have been designed to mimic the huge circular settling tanks which appear throughout the landscape.
Similarly, the impressive atmospheres of the existing warehouses are an important part of the qualities of Par Docks. To preserve and revitalise these spaces, a few targeted interventions now create a multitude of attractive spatial qualities. Taking a minimalist approach to the interior, the first building is now an exhibition galley and the second an activity hall.
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 Reading, the public are invited to join in the activities, including; 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