Charlecote Park - Visitors Lodge.
Construction of new brick lodge for ticket sales
The house at Charlecote Park is Grade I listed and a fine example of 15th century architecture, which was extensively remodelled in the 19th century. It was given to the National Trust in 1947.
The National Trust had, for many years, been selling tickets for entry to Charlecote Park from a small timber hut adjacent to the main gate. Both the hut and the adjacent publicity tent were placed rather prominently on the main approach to the house and obstruct the vistas down the planted avenue.
The proposed visitor building allowed the removal of these two incongruous elements and provides more acceptable working conditions for the staff within. It also opens up the vistas along the main approach to the public.
The new building is located in the car park, which is immediately to the east of the main road through the village. It is still within the registered landscape, however is sufficiently detached from the house and grounds itself so as not to have a detrimental impact on the park. Positioning of the lodge is such that it allows staff to control a new pedestrian gate into the park and provides a sight line to the vehicle access gate for people with disabilities.
The design of the lodge relates to the architecture of the buildings around the main house. It was also desirable that the building should feel to be part of the village and was designed to be in line with the key principles of the Charlecote Village Design Statement (2001).
The building was built from handmade bricks with limited stone detailing to match the character of the village. The commissioned bricks were selected for size and appearance to match, closely, those used within the village and at Charlecote Park itself. Chamfered bricks were used to create details around the windows and doors and also at the gables. The proposed design has a great deal in common with the buildings around the woodyard at Charlecote Park and more specifically the village hall (formerly the school).
Windows and doors are all painted softwood, finished in the same colours as the other estate buildings and designed with a robust character typical of the mid 19th century. The ground works associated with the new building were as minimal as possible, retaining something of the rural nature.