Maggie’s Centre, Lanarkshire

Lanarkshire, United Kingdom


Reiach and Hall

Landscape Architects
Rankin Fraser

Dave Morris


Scottish Design Awards, 2015

RIBA National Award, 2015

RIAS Award, 2015

Civic Trust Award, 2015

Architecture + Environment

Having previously worked on the Stirling Prize winning Maggie’s building at Charing Cross (RSH+P) and the Maggie’s in Newcastle by Edward Cullinan Architects, we were ideally placed to collaborate with architects Reiach and Hall on the design of the daylighting and artificial lighting for the eleventh Maggie’s, located in Lanarkshire.

The multiple award-winning design is a long low brick pavilion set within a walled garden. It is designed to connect deeply with its surroundings, offering a progression of landscape, texture and light from the entrance path to arrival court, through the sequence of interior spaces and courtyards to the far end walled garden.

The low height of the construction created a daylighting design challenge: the central social courtyard spaces offer a connection to the sky but they lack a direct connection to light. We posed the idea that a centrally positioned object could provide surfaces for light to land on, bounce off, and penetrate through. This would not only reflect light, but also scenery, bringing it deeper into the spaces, providing a focal point and creating dynamic shadow play.

Having conducted a series of studies to analyse the level of penetration, we evolved the idea into the elegant, highly polished and perforated gold structures that have come to be known as ‘geode light catchers’.

The brief for the artificial lighting called for enough flexibility to cope with multiple tasks in these adaptable spaces, as well as supporting a domestic level of comfort.

To mark the progression through the building, the design focuses on highlighting the major architectural and landscape interventions. We integrated light such that it frames vistas, drawing visitors into and through the building, while reinforcing the connection between inside to outside. Warm light washes the timber surfaces to bring out their inherent warmth, with a second layer of domestic furniture style pieces contributing to a homely atmosphere.

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