Hengistbury Head visitor centre built with straw walls

Hengistbury Head Visitor Centre The centre will be house in a thatched barn and a new extension being built alongside

Related Stories

A new £1m visitor centre at a Dorset coastal nature reserve is being built with a grass roof and straw walls.

Work has begun on an extension to the thatched barn at Hengistbury Head, near Christchuch, which is being built to minimise energy bills as well as its impact on the environment.

Bournemouth Borough Council said solar panels on the building would save about £1,000 a year on electricity.

The centre is due to open in the summer of 2013.

The centre is being funded with £300,000 from developer contributions, £432,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund and £300,000 from landfill tax.

It will house an exhibition about the pre-history of Bournemouth, an area for education and community use, work space, toilets and a shop.

As well as the solar panels, the energy-saving features include a green roof to absorb rainfall and provide insulation and timber-framed walls insulated with straw bales.

The work area in the centre will also provide space for community groups such as the Hengistbury Head Supporters Group, Hengistbury Residents' Association and Christchurch Harbour Ornithological Group.

Hengistbury Head, to the east of Bournemouth, forms part of Christchurch Harbour and incorporates prehistoric earth works and evidence of human occupation dating back to 10,500 BC.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

BBC Dorset

Weather

Bournemouth

Min. Night 15 °C

Features

  • June plays with a pelicanDad's menagerie

    An extraordinary childhood growing up in a zoo


  • US soldier, part of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), manning a machine gun onboard a Chinook helicopter over the Gardez district of Paktia province on 11 August 2014Viewpoint

    Nato's role in making the Afghan army sustainable


  • Architect's drawing of bedroomDeep dreams

    The homes where you can live under the sea


  • A snailHard to stomach?

    The IT worker who quit his job to farm snails for restaurants


  • An assortment of secret menu itemsMcSecret

    The fast food items you've never heard of


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.