Case Study: Cornerstone Church Nottingham

Case study Cornerstone Church Nottingham

Architect: Roger Harrison Architecture

Brick Type: Abbey Buff Multi

Location: Cornerstone Church, Castle Boulevard, Nottingham

Sector: Public

Main Contractor: GF Tomlinson

A striking new church has been completed in Nottingham using Forterra’s Abbey Buff Multi bricks. The modern building has been designed to take advantage of its prominent site on Castle Boulevard and meet the needs of the growing congregation.

Cornerstone Church made the bold move to build a new home as rising numbers meant that it had out-grown its former Wollaton site. Roger Harrison Architecture was given the challenge of designing a building that would fulfil a variety of roles to suit the needs of the church.

Roger Harrison Architecture

Brick Type
Abbey Buff Multi

Cornerstone Church, Castle Boulevard, Nottingham


Main Contractor
GF Tomlinson

• Abbey Buff Multi

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The £6 million development contains a traditional worship space which has been designed to hold congregations of up to 750 people. In addition it includes an alternative worship space; a community meeting hub; teaching spaces; meeting rooms; 40 toilets; a crèche; a large kitchen; coffee bar andstaff offices.

There is a central entrance in the main street elevation which creates a hub that links and unifies the two different elements of the building – worship and teaching. The large auditorium to the right of the fully glazed entrance presents a striking form with a vast monopitch roof and raking charcoal grey coloured rainscreen cladding over Forterra Abbey Buff Multi brickwork. The classroom element of the building balances the worship hall with a more traditionally shaped blockwork building.

Masonry was chosen to provide a durable facing material to the street frontage that complemented the materials used throughout the city. The blockwork is reminiscent of Nottingham sandstone while the soft buff and red hues of Forterra’s Abbey Buff Multi pick up on the local Victorian red brickwork as well as the sandstone colour. The building’s large frontage is broken up by the central glazed entrance and fluctuations in relief, but the use of a multi brick provides less visual mass than a plain one giving a more balanced elevation.

The Abbey Buff Multi brickwork on the worship hall returns into the recessed entrance in a gentle curve formed in Flemish bond providing a splayed entrance and feature wall to display the church signage. Using Flemish bond rather than brick specials to form the curved feature wall allowed for greater design freedom to dictate the layout of the wall within the restricted depth of the site, but placed greater emphasis on the level of finish. A high level of workmanship was requiredas any defects on the curved entrance wall would be extremely noticeable.

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