Silecroft Beach Cafe

Silecroft Beach Cafe

Silecroft Beach Cafe

Cumbria, UK


Our competition proposal for a beach front community cafe at Silecroft hovers lightly above the landscape. A platform of local stone relates the building to the rugged surroundings and raises it up, protecting the cafe from water and maximising views. Upon arrival, visitors walk along a ramp that is orientated towards the local landmark of Black Combe, highlighting the natural scenery.

Two timber volumes sit on the platform and house support functions such as kitchen, office and WCs – between these an open, flexible seating area enjoys panoramic views towards the sea in one direction and the landscape in the other. Floating above, an over-sailing pitched roof shelters the building and outdoor seating. A pathway leads visitors down to the beach.

The design has been conceived to achieve passive design solutions and incorporate sustainable energy systems. The large roof provides an ideal surface to mount PVs and collect rainwater for use in the building. It also provides shading to the glazed areas of the facade. An air source heat pump is proposed for heating the space. Low U-values, high-performance glazing and a high level of airtightness, together with a ventilation system with heat recovery further improve performance. A cross-laminated timber (CLT) structure brings the benefits of carbon sequestration.

The cafe seating area enjoys panoramic views towards the sea.

South Elevation