Willesden Green Cultural Centre

A bright new cultural hub in Brent, London

An airy dynamic space breathing new life into a community

The prestigious new £25 million Cultural Centre for the community of Willesden Green opened in September 2015, fulfilling an ambitious brief. It incorporates the restoration of a much-loved small Victorian library building with a contemporary new library and cultural hub, and 95 new one and two-bed residential apartments, all set within a conservation area of North London. A key feature of the Centre is the internal atrium with VELUX Modular Skylights set in a stunning triangular formation to echo the building’s triangular design. The attractive atrium serves to unify the entire building, creating an inviting sense of space.

In 2011 the school’s management and board approved a major renovation project that would alter the school’s construction and expand the floor space by up to 2,500 m2. The project involved constructing several new buildings, including an expansion of the canteen and a new teaching section. It was decided to install VELUX Modular Skylights in a ridgelight configuration in both of these areas – a decision that has made a clear difference in the historic Cathedral school.

The Cultural Centre encompasses the following facilities:

  • Library
  • Café
  • Customer 
  • Contact Point
  • Brent Archive
  • Brent Museum
  • Exhibition Space
  • Performance Space
  • Ampitheatre

"This was the first installation in the UK of a VMS Atrium Longlight Solution and it was a great answer to the challenging design of the building. A key benefit to main contractors is the fast installation process, enabling internal trades to commence sooner than when using conventional site assembled systems. The finished installation looks magnificent particularly as the incorporated smoke vents are completely indistinguishable due to the concealed 24v actuators.

The system has a number of unique details that allow rapid installation, however it is vital that the design of the steelwork and adjacent trades are co-ordinated at an early stage to take full advantage of these features.

This is the first time we have used this pre-fabricated system and it is clearly an excellent product.

Robert Culley,
Sales Director at Roofglaze Ltd

Facts about the project

The collaborative partners:

  • Brent Council 
  • Galliford Try, a leading construction company, and their brand Linden Homes 
  • Architects Allford Hall Monaghan Morris 
  • Ground Construction Ltd. 
  • Roofglaze, an installation partner of VELUX.

The solution 

  • Creating the atrium involved five rows of VELUX Longlights with 
  • 19° pitch. The solution formed the triangular effect 
  • The solution consist of both fixed and venting modules 
  • Modules measure 1000 x 1800 mm and 750 x 1800 mm 
  • 35 Longlight modules in total

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