Charles Knowles Design : Architects

New Cattery at Old Windsor

Built within the Green Belt under exceptional planning circumstances, this low-tech, sustainable cattery is at the country outpost of the Battersea Dogs & Cats Home. The structure uses and expresses the renewable timber resource. In the spring the grass roof is a riot of colour and wildlife, changing with the seasons and substantially reducing water runoff in the winter.

From the inside the public are able to view the cats as they bask in the sun in their glass and stainless steel external cat runs, overlooking butterflies in the buddleia bank running down to a lake.

An exposed timber and sedum grass covered roof, set into the sloping bank, hovers over both internal and external spaces which are defined by continuous clerestory windows, bathing the interior with reflected light and providing natural cross ventilation. Coloured cat boxes with individually heated platforms and expressed stainless steel ventilation systems mollycoddle the cats, behind large glass doors for public viewing.

As well as the cat viewing spaces, there are maternity areas where the kittens are left to play whilst the mother rests in a raised box inaccessible to the young; isolation areas, food preparation rooms, laundry, socialising rooms, stores and offices.

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