Waddesdon Manor Visitor Pavilion

A practical and contemporary-style pavilion for the visitors of Waddesdon Manor.

Built in 1874, Waddesdon Manor houses Baron Ferdinand de Rothschild’s collection of fine art and is the most popular National Trust venue in England. During its popular Christmas season, the estate welcomes more than 10,000 visitors per day. The pavilion on the Waddesdon Estate aims to provide ticketing and welcoming facilities, National Trust membership opportunities, toilets and a bus stop, and the practical but contemporary design of the pavilion provides a discreet way of managing the enormous number of visitors that the Manor receives.

Located within a Grade I-listed landscape, Skelly & Couch has developed an efficient and very discreet way to provide the pavilion with heating, lighting, membership and ticketing facilities within the highly detailed building. It has been designed to be a temporary building with a 10-year design life.

The pavilion’s modern design is accentuated by a large steel canopy, emphasising its presence and purpose as a shelter within the park landscape. The generous outdoor undercover space beneath the canopy welcomes visitors to face the outward views of the Estate and Manor. In contrast to the external environment, white-frosted glass encloses the pavilion’s dark interiors of polycarbonate rooms containing the visitor facilities.

Skelly and Couch worked closely with the architects to develop a scheme that was cost- effective to run and remained comfortable throughout the year through an iterative energy and sunlight modelling process.