A Redundant Farm
Gluckman Smith were approached by the emerging furniture designer James Smith Designs to transform Argal Home Farm, a redundant Cornish farmstead, into a vibrant and inspirational place to live and work.
Project Name: Argal Workshop
Studio name: Woldon
Completion Date: 2019
Location: Falmouth , United Kingdom
Photography: Jason Ingram
The new workshop forms part of a masterplan for Argal Farm, including the conversion of a stone barn into co-working space for local creative businesses and a replacement farmhouse in Cornish granite complemented by landscaped kitchen garden and orchard.
Working collaboratively with the client, a design concept for the workshop emerged from a detailed brief, balancing the technical requirements of furniture making with the desire to create an exceptional workspace. Environmentally, providing suitable lighting and mitigating dust and fumes required a thorough analysis of extract ventilation, heating and natural light levels.
In his work, the client embraces traditional tooling with emerging technology, and the building is designed to reflect this range and craft. Wood is used in different forms throughout: glulam structure with expressed jointing, external cladding in larch and machined ply for internal finishes.
The glulam construction was employed to provide the large unobstructed workspace in an elegant form. The new building houses a full timber workshop facility combining traditional wood-working machinery and hand tools, with a 5-axis CNC milling machine.
The reimagined farm is flourishing, with the timber frame workshop at the centre of this new creative community.
Comfort and Efficiency
Through a fabric-first approach to detailing the workshop achieves a high thermal performance. The timber is sustainably sourced, and the design ensures a low embodied and operational carbon use. The farm uses a biomass boiler for heating the assembly of buildings which achieves significant energy savings.
The north facing roof pitch houses a range of skylights providing a consistent source of daylight, optimal for detailed joinery work. The southerly roof pitch is designed with a deep overhang to control direct sunlight.
The timber elevations are complemented by sheet metal roofing, fitting with the simplicity of the building’s geometry. The southerly roof pitch contains fully integrated solar photo-voltaic panels.