Knights Brown was appointed to construct a new museum to house the fossils collected from the Jurassic coast by Dr Steve Etches MBE. Steve Etches has been collecting for over 30 years, and in this time, he has amassed an important collection of rare and unique fossils. His first find was a flint fossil sea urchin, which he found at age 5, and his collection now contains about 2,300 specimens, many of which are scientifically significant.
The new building is a combination of a concrete frame to the lower level and cross laminated timber above, finished in traditional Dorset stone cladding. With a floor area of 727m2, the building comprises entrance lobby, ticket desk and shop, workshop area, toilet facilities, kitchenette, office space, flexible learning space for seminars, presentations, learning activities and exhibitions, and a classroom with capacity for 30 people. It also incorporates a new village hall for the residents of Kimmeridge.
With high quality finishes and building services installations throughout, the museum also includes a virtual aquarium delivered by CGI projection onto the gallery ceiling.
To keep longer term running costs to a minimum, the trust invested in the building fabric and the installation of high quality M&E systems including sustainability measures such as ground source heat pumps served by six 100m deep boreholes and PV roof panels to power the under-floor heating.