Watford Museum is housed in a Grade-II Listed Georgian mansion built in 1775. The collection includes approximately 30,000 items covering local history, archaeology, art and costume together with paintings by J M W Turner. It also provides a vital focus to the local community.
Our project includes a new grey-brick addition that is both contemporary and sensitive to its heritage setting, restoration work to the landmark building as well as improvements to displays, storage and accessibility. Watford Borough Council has named the project ‘Making Connections’ to highlight the ways in which the building’s transformation will enhance educational objectives and community use. An important part of our work on the project has been to understand the role played by the Museum in the local community and to celebrate this within our design.
New facilities to be provided as part of the works include an education suite, temporary exhibition space, café, retail and admin/volunteer areas. As a practice, we are interested in the way local museums build on the heritage of a particular place and its people and how architecturally they are very much about identity and civic pride.