Design Awards 2011
The Vine Trust Barge
Winner: Design Award
The Vine Trust is an international charity which seeks to enable volunteers to make a difference to some of the poorest children and communities in the world. The Vine Trust refits MOD vessels to operate as floating medical centers, providing free health and dental care to some of the poorest communities living along the Amazon River.
In November 2008, the charity approached Archial to help them refit an MOD fuel vessel, this time to be located in Leith, which would act as an educational teaching base, connecting school children across Scotland with the plight of street children in Peru.
The ambitious project includes teaching areas, a cinema, exhibition space and multipurpose outdoor performance stage as well as office accommodation for the Trust. Thanks to the generosity of Forth Ports, the charity have secured free permanent mooring in front of the historic Port Authority Building at Leith Docks for the next 25 years.
In contrast to the heavy industrial look of the existing ship, crisp glass and timber volumes sit within the shell of the old ship. The glass box of the display space has vertical timber slats running along its length, which hide or reveal more depending on the viewing angle, the intention being that this will draw people in to investigate the contents, while also providing solar shading to the exhibition space.
As this was a charitable project, Archial donated their services free of charge and encouraged a number of other consultants and suppliers to do the same.