Ainsley Gommon Architects


Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council





Date Completed

Summer 2005

Development Overview

Ainsley Gommon delivered this new build Visitor Centre, café and offices in Victorian Grade 1 Listed Park for Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council, funded by Heritage Lottery Fund. The Visitor’s Centre serves as a social space, exhibition venue and information centre for local events in and around the park and Birkenhead.

The project is founded on a number of key design principles:

  • The creation of a landmark building that reflects modern design technologies that use its orientation to advantage to make the best use of ambient energy and green construction strategies to make it environmentally friendly and sustainable.
  • The design of a building that belongs to the tradition of garden buildings like orangeries and palm houses, where the external landscape extends into the interior and the building provides a setting for enjoying the landscape beyond.

The brief was developed jointly by the client and the design team, and the building includes:

Exhibition and interpretative space

  1. A café & toilets

    • A multi-function room & adjoining preparation area creating opportunities for workshops and school visits
    • Offices and a base for the Park Manager and Park Rangers

The Park Visitor’s Centre adds to the park’s uniqueness, and has helped to develop and sustain the use of the park by providing attractive and pleasant spaces for a range of activities, and supporting events within the park.