Inspired by the archetype of the primitive hut, Niall McLaughlin Architects have built The Fishing Hut, a wooden construction located in a picturesque lake in Hampshire, England that changes with the seasons, just like its natural surroundings.
The Fishing Hut was meant to provide a safe place to store boats and fishing equipment, but also serves as a shelter and meeting place for local fishermen. Made with a grid structure on galvanised supports immersed in water, the hut is used during the fishing season, from the end of April until September, and its intermittent use provided the starting point for the design.
The timber-framed construction is completely open and permeable when in use, achieving this through a façade of wooden shutters which fold up to allow the fishermen to look out over their grounds. The walls, made of wooden panels supported by a system of side pistons and used as a sunbreak in the summer, remain closed and weatherproof for the rest of the year allowing the building to ‘hunker down’ in the winter.
The Fishing Hut is as much about time passing as it is about fishing
Some sections of wood were left untreated in The Fishing Hut, so that the exterior will gradually take a silver tone, while the interior will retain the oak panels golden hues. In the architect’s words: “The exterior oak will have weathered to grey, but as the shutters open up, they will be warm gold on the underside and they will be doubled by a reflection in the still water”.
Completed in late 2014, The Fishing Hut it has since won the RIBA Stephen Lawrence Prize 2015, which awards projects built for less than £1 million, and recently picked up first prize at the annual Wood Awards.
Photography is by Nick Kane.