Eendenkooi, CAMBRIDGESHIRE, 2010

The Great Fen Visitor’s Centre, Cambridgeshire: Competition  entry

The Cambridgeshire Fens used to be abundant with fish and wildfowl and decoys were employed along the banks of the Mere to lure ducks. Our proposal for a new visitor centre draws on this history.  Eendenkoo literally means “duck-cage”, and is the Dutch origin of “decoy”. Our scheme uses the the form of the ancient curved decoys to form the building, approached though pollarded willows. It is located within a proposal new ‘scrape’- a haven for birds that will freeze to form a giant winter rink. The curved timber roof peels around to make a space that feels like a woven basket or an eel trap, at the end of which the vastness of the landscape is revealed.