Poundbury is an urban extension to the Dorset county town of Dorchester, built on the principles of traditional architecture and urban planning as advocated by HRH The Prince of Wales, and delivered by the Duchy of Cornwall. Led by world-renowned architect and urban planner, Leon Krier, construction began on Poundbury in 1993, with a view to complete the development by 2025.
One of the most recent additions to Poundbury is Bowes Lyon Court – a development which has a Gross Development Value of £21m. Bowes Lyon Court is built in Queen Mother Square, the centre piece of Poundbury and offers up 25,000ft of communal areas, including a wellbeing suite, library, restaurant, café, atrium and even a snooker room.
Keen for Bowes Lyon Court to mirror the local environment, main contractor McCarthy & Stone enlisted Krier to develop the master plan and Ben Pentreath Associates to do the design work for the Assisted Living development.
The most prominent and focal part of the building is its clock tower and the grand entrance hall with large roof lantern, which creates a bright and open space taking its inspiration from the Palm House at the Royal Botanical Gardens in Edinburgh. This area houses a number of facilities including a reception area, a mezzanine which connects the northern and southern block, and at its hub, a gallery seating area which is perfect for socialising with visitors and other homeowners. There is also stunning views from the upper floors of Maiden’s Castle and the Dorset countryside.
Facilities include a shared homeowner’s lounge, outdoor terrace & seating area overlooking Queen Mother Square, an on-site table service restaurant providing a three course lunch and light refreshments in the evenings, and a guest suite. There is also a library, wellbeing suite, quiet zone/media café, large indoor chess set, and a billiards/snooker room.
A ‘secret’ atrium and garden named ‘The Orangery’ sits in the centre of the northern block, where its roof is entirely glazed, providing natural light to the garden, which includes beautiful planting and seating.
Clive Fenton, Chief Executive Officer for McCarthy & Stone, said: “McCarthy & Stone has been delighted to be working with the Duchy of Cornwall on this site. The scheme has provided us with an opportunity to create a unique design, suitable for this prominent location in the Poundbury development. The social and cultural principles of Poundbury are well-known and McCarthy & Stone is pleased to mirror these principles, both to create a high-quality built environment, and to deliver architectural excellence and social sustainability.
“The development is designed to offer homeowners the very best in independent living within a safe and secure environment. It also provides huge benefits for the wider community and the 174 local businesses in Poundbury. Given the immediate proximity of Queen Mother Square to the development, homeowners are able to satisfy many of their everyday needs without being dependent on private or public transport. In fact, we estimate that homeowners in a scheme of this size will spend roughly £6m every ten years in the local community. In addition, we have invested heavily in the local workforce, employing a team of local contractors and labourers, as well as taking on new apprentices to help us deliver the new scheme.”