In 2014 RIBA launched an international competition to create a village hall and cricket pavilion in the small village of Sessay, North Yorkshire. Our response to the brief focused on placemaking, creating a local hub for the community and a space where locals could meet, hold events, dine and watch the various sports that would take place on the site.

Our proposal sought to create a building in three parts connected by a plinth, a design inspired by and derived from traditional Yorkshire cottage precedents. The bar and the pavilion sit together and offer views of the cricket, while the village hall is rotated towards the main pitch and also allows a view of the village beyond. On the far side, the hall opens up to an outside space of its own surrounded by a circle of trees.

As the field is prone to flooding the buildings are elevated, with gently sloping banks on both sides. This extra height provides much-improved views of the cricket. The design aims for simplicity of form that is also beautifully detailed with the use of warm timber, locally sourced stone and glass, creating bright, open and airy spaces connected to and communicating with the outdoors.