Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Longhouse at the Cranborne ATC wins LABC Building Excellence Award

The Longhouse at the Cranborne Ancient Technology Centre has won the LABC Building Excellence Award for the South West Region in the Community Category!    Thank you to everyone for your contribution to this success - more details to follow on their website http://www.ancienttechnologycentre.co.uk/
The longhouse is the largest reconstruction to date. The evidence for this building comes from the Royal garrison forts of Denmark where theses houses formed quadrangles within circular ramparts and seem to have housed a ship of men each.

It is notable for its absence of interior roof supporting posts and relies to a degree, on the curving shape of the timbers and internal tie beams that span the main hall to make it stand. The roof has over 22,000 hand made shingles covering larch boards which overlay the rafters and the sweet chestnut frame. The walls are hazel and sweet chestnut wattle, daubed and whitewashed, while the main hall floor is a mixture of local chalk and earth mixed with un-pasteurised milk to form a flexible yet hard wearing surface.

As with our other buildings, the majority of work was undertaken by visiting school children, older students from Learning Centres and our incredible team of volunteers.
The building houses some disguised modern elements such as toilets and a kitchen to support our public open days. But we have been careful to not “pollute” what is an incredible structure and authentic main hall with these modern elements.