The Movement Cafe

Studio Myerscough
Greenwich, 2012

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  • Interior layout of the cafe    

Data

  • Begun: Jul 2012
  • Completed: Jul 2012
  • Floor area: 140m2
  • Sector: Arts and culture
  • Total cost: £90,000
  • Procurement: Design and build
  • Address: Waller Way, Greenwich, SE10 8JA, United Kingdom

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Temporary cafe by Morag Myerscough designed and built in just sixteen days in the Royal Borough of Greenwich

Cafe, theatre, local landmark, meeting place and poem - the Movement Cafe in Greenwich is all of this and more. Designed and built in just 16 days to greet locals and thousands of visitors arriving at Greenwich DLR station for the Olympic equestrian events, the cafe turned a hole in the ground left by demolition into a fabulous community space run by the not-for-profit Greenwich Co-operative Development Agency which has hosted poetry readings, acoustic performances and a pop-up cinema.

Briefed by clients Cathedral Group to create an eye-catching temporary social space that could introduce Greenwich people to its future development on the site beyond, designer Morag Myerscough exploited the sunken plot to conjure a natural amphitheatre, accessible by ramp and lined with stepped seating built from scaffolding and scaffold boards surrounded by plants.

As there was such a short build time, the solution was to use existing shipping containers to provide a base structure, which was instantly water tight and secure. The the work started cutting holes into the containers, attaching hand painted geometric exterior plywood cladding. The structure is crowned with a tower of scaffolding to hold the words from the tweet by Lemn Sissay in superbold type and completed with an illuminated 'M' and a wind sock. The worksurfaces and all the furniture are made from reclaimed laboratory tops and made by Morag Myerscough and Luke Morgan.