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Gather, Batheaston

Since opening its doors in 2015, Gather cafe has developed as a focal point for the village community of Batheaston.

In 2020 its owners hoped to grow into that role by moving down the hill to occupy a vacant public house. The prominent corner site holds a collection of buildings with the original public house constructed in the 1830s.

With an aim to refurbish the ensemble as both pub and café, the new publicans briefed Brisco Loran to draw up proposals that would make sense of the site’s two centuries of built accretions.

The practice obtained planning permission and listed building consent for the proposed alterations in December 2020 and construction work began on site in the new year.

The works proposed create a new sheltered accessible entrance connecting passing pedestrians directly to the heart of the premises, whilst new openings around an internal courtyard bring daylight to the same central areas.

The scheme preserves the distinctive plan form of the site’s long diamond-tipped skittle alley whilst a new large window seat connects the café’s users to the narrow brook passing along the same façade.