Oatlands – Phase 1
Long considered one of Guernsey’s treasures, Oatlands Village has been given a new lease of life after a significant overhaul. Blending the heritage of its original buildings with modern family attractions, the revamped Oatlands is once again a leading destination for locals and tourists alike.
Oatlands is currently home to an eclectic mix of attractions, including two historic brick kilns, craft and embroidery shops, a jeweller, a chocolatier, The Kiln Restaurant and an 18 hole miniature golf course. Having come under new ownership in 2015, Phase 1 of the Oatlands development mainly involved renovation and refurbishment. Local practice Paul Langlois Architects was tasked with overseeing the extensive project.
The practice was involved in all aspects of design including the heritage buildings, business rebranding and signage, advising on external colour schemes, designing replacement shop fronts and interior design consultancy on the restaurant. The Kiln Restaurant is now a comfortable space with a rural feel. It’s a great place to sit, relax and enjoy a drink and a bite to eat.
The existing thatch roofs of the Heritage Buildings were replaced and the buildings stripped back of unsympathetic additions from over the years to reveal their true historic identity. The Courtyard was renovated and re-landscaped. The last remaining brick kilns in Guernsey were carefully restored and repointed with lime mortar and now house a small historical museum.
Since the relaunch, feedback on Oatlands Village has been hugely positive. The restoration and renovation works have also been warmly received and were recently recognised with a Guernsey Design Award nomination in the ‘Non Residential (over 250k)’ category. Paul Langlois commented:
“When we first got involved the site was in a very poor condition, there had been no maintenance for some time but it had ‘good bones’. The quality of the existing buildings and the layout of the site had promising potential. The client knew that Guernsey needed something like this – a tourist and a local destination.
“The feedback so far has been fantastic. Oatlands was very popular in the 1990s and Guernsey has really been lacking somewhere like this. Whenever we spoke to anyone before the work started, there was a lot of good will and everyone was very positive. The restaurant is very busy and you get the feel that there is a real buzz around the place.
“It means a lot to also have some industry recognition, especially with this project. It’s a legacy project and for the good of the community. To be part of something that enhances Guernsey’s reputation is a good feeling.”
Building on this success, a second phase of developments and improvements is currently underway. At the heart of this work will be a second landscaped courtyard surrounded by a timber clad soft-play centre, an external play area, a refurbished building and a new unit for retail use. Oatlands Village will also be the new home for Guernsey’s iconic airplane G-Joey.