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Boozing Bristol fashion

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Bristol’s dockside regeneration continues apace.A new addition to Britain’s liveliest waterfront,the Severnshed Restaurant, occupies a transit shed in the Docks,the only survivor ofa set ofnine demountable structures designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel in the last century.The shed was purchased by KBP ,a company specially formed to launch and manage the Severnshed venture,by the architect Peter Meacock ofCentral Workshop,with Matthew Pruen and Patrick Dempsey.

Externally the building has been carefully repaired and retains its boat-shed character.

Full-height doors are pulled back to reveal a secondary set ofweatherprooftimber glazed doors.The free-spanning interior still echoes its original use and Brunel’s peripheral castiron columns have been left exposed in front ofnew stud walls.A narrow clerestory at ro oflevel allows light reflected offthe water to illuminate the internal rooftimbers.

The outstanding feature ofSevernshed is the stainless-steel multifunctional Hover Bar,with a cherry wood counter,built in collaboration with sculptor Kevin Wright.It separates the restaurant and bar areas but can be moved on inflated hover pads to either end ofthe building to make space for live music performances or special functions.The main point about the bar,says Meacock,is its section:from one side it serves as a bar,from the other it acts as a frame,providing continuous views through to the restaurant.Services are connected to the bar from a cast concrete trench running the length ofthe building,which also acts as a duct for the air-management system.

Studwork walls are MDF finished in a maroon-coloured,ceramic high-impact paint to dado level.The polished concrete floor contains a specially chosen aggregate from Chesil beach in Dorset.Furniture includes chairs with single-piece plywood seats and backs on a chrome frame and custom-designed MDF tables spray-lacquered in matt black.Garden floodlights provide a simple,economic lighting solution.

The Severnshed has been designed to serve as an art centre as well as a restaurant.

Special sound insulation wil reduce external noise levels to 45dB when music events take place,while ample wall space inside and out allows art exhibitions to be hosted.

The kitchen is fitted with a wood-burning stove and serves seasonal organic produce.The organic ethos at the heart ofthe project aims to cater to the growing demand for ‘green’eating.


RESTAURANT & BUSINESS PLANNING TEAM KBP Matthew Pruen,Patrick dempsey,Peter Meacock

STRUCTURAL ENGINEER Structural Solutions

MAIN CONTRACTOR Chameleon Refurbishment


mechanical Bristol Fan Company;

electrical Mark Creech;

plumbing Mike Lewis;

bar Peter Meacock,Matthew Pruen,Kevin Wright;

bar construction Kevin Wright;

graphics Dutton Merryfield;

furniture John Tanous,Lisa Wenstrom;

air cushions Hovair;

catering equipment Ken Wheeler,Des McGuiness;

catering supplies Pattesons;

ro ofRon Pratt;

ss WC s,drink shelves Harris Pye Engineering

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