Lancaster University

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Designer Wayne Hemingway inaugurates new £10m arts building

01/05/2010 11:05:55

Prof Rachel Cooper, Wayne Hemingway and Deputy VC Prof Bob McKinlay
Prof Rachel Cooper, Wayne Hemingway and Deputy VC Prof Bob McKinlay

International designer Wayne Hemingway has broken the ground at the start of building work on the new £10m Lancaster Institute for the Contemporary Arts.

Born in Morecambe, he is an honorary graduate of Lancaster University and was awarded the MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List. With his wife Gerardine, he founded the global fashion label Red or Dead which was sold in 1999. The couple then created Hemingway Design, which specializes in affordable and social design and whose projects have won numerous awards.

Mr Hemingway said: “ Investing in the arts has always been worthwhile for our “souls “ but it’s now proving to be a worthwhile economic investment as the creative industries sector continues to grow and contribute healthily to employment and economic output.”

He followed the sod cutting ceremony with a Master Class at the Institute for Entrepreneurship and Enterprise Development (IEED) at Lancaster University Management School.

The new LICA building will house Art, Design, Music and Theatre Studies as well as three public arts facilities; the Peter Scott Gallery, the Nuffield Theatre and the International Concert Series. It also hosts the research group ImaginationLancaster.

The timber framed building – due to open in September 2010 – will be the public face of the LICA groups, with a stage for the nationally and internationally recognised work produced at Lancaster University.

The building, in a woodland setting on the north campus, is designed to encourage visitors into LICA and be the base for the redevelopment of the entire arts sector on the north campus.

The architects Sheppard Robson have designed the development with the aim of it becoming the UK’s first higher education project to achieve the new “outstanding” rating under the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) rating.

This will include natural ventilation, reduced energy consumption and the use of sustainable materials such as timber.

The 5000 square metre environmentally-friendly timber building will be wrapped in translucent cladding which will filter varying degrees of light into the interior. The main accommodation includes three interlinked social spaces, with open plan offices on the first floor.

The contractor is Morgan Ashurst.

To date the University has delivered seven BREEAM Excellent new builds and there are a further two BREEAM Excellent new builds currently onsite.