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Dow Jones Architects for Garden Museum, Lambeth, London

DJA Garden Museum Education room external
DJA Garden Museum Education room external Credit: Anthony Coleman

Dow Jones Architects’ second project for the Garden Museum improves the exhibition facilities and creates three new pavilions on the churchyard site, housing a large and a small education room for learning and community activities, and a cafe, all opening into a new cloister garden.

This project allows the Garden Museum to reach new audiences by providing a more welcoming, accessible building, the resources to hold activities targetting diverse users, a community hub where local groups can meet, and a public garden. This should help the museum to foster long-term relationships with the local community through a variety of educational and hands-on activities.

The Clore Learning Space provides a stimulating space, hosting community groups, primary and secondary schools for the first time. On the other side of the Sackler Garden is a new kitchen: an intimate space for local groups and partners to use for workshops on cooking and nutrition, while providing a focus for the local allotment site overseen by the museum. 

DJA Garden Museum Nave Event
DJA Garden Museum Nave Event Credit: Anthony Coleman

Consultation sessions with local groups throughout the development phase included a children and parents group, gardening groups at a local GP's, local residents via a ‘Neighbours Day’, museum volunteers and online visitor surveys. These ran alongside more formal evaluation methods for data collection developed with the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The new green space allows not only Museum visitors, but local residents, workers and passers-by to enjoy the redeveloped garden. Unsurprisingly the architects have found themselves drawn in by the striking architecture of a deconsecrated church juxtaposed with the bronze-clad extension and landscaped gardens. 

Back to the MacEwen longlist.


Architect Dow Jones Architects

MEP engineer OR Consulting

Structural engineer Momentum

Quantity surveyor Pierce Hill

Project manager G&T

Approved building inspector Assent Building Control

Landscape design Dan Pearson and Christopher Bradley Hole

Conservation Neil Burton

Lighting designer DHA

Tree consultant Root Cause


Archaeology Archaeology South-East

Catering Ben Benton


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