Earlier this month, Robert Wilson from our archiGRAD scheme was notified of his success in RIBA London’s Pews & Perches project.
Robert said: ‘I am thrilled that I have been chosen to design and build my bench. This is such a great opportunity and I can’t wait to start building with the help of my fellow archiGRADs!’
Pews & Perches was open to architecture students, graduates and emerging practices to submit designs for a bespoke public bench for London’s Pleasure Gardens – a new entertainment destination in east London, opening this June.
The site is the Royal Docks – it will be changed to a 21st century pleasure gardens with the benches to be installed at waterside locations around the dock. RIBA London and London’s Pleasure Gardens were looking for designs that would engage and delight members of the public visiting the site for music and arts events – public furniture fit for a festival.
The project is also designed to showcase new architectural talent during London Festival of Architecture (23 June - 8 July) which has the theme, ‘playful city’. London’s Pleasure Gardens will be a unique and high profile site. It is part of the Olympic Last Mile route and the benches will be part of the visitor experience in east London during 2012.
‘My design creates a relaxing place to sit and chat. People shelter behind a trellis enveloped by climbing plants. On this people acn hang mementos of their visit, building up a wall that inspires conversation and curiosity. Planters set in the bench seat offer scent and colour, animating the benches wooden structure.’
Robert along with help from other archiGRADs must now create and deliver this bench to a budget of £150 – a challenge but designs were selected that were realistic to the brief and budget for building over April. The archiGRAD team have the additional challenge of getting their bench down to London.
We hope that North East companies might come forward to help donate materials to help with the construction of Robert’s bench or with an offer to help with the transportation of the bench. We need a variety of materials including marine plywood, scaffolding boards, copper/steel pipe, threaded rod, rope and plants.
If you can help: please email Robert.