Port Erin Commissioners advertised
an expression of interest for proposals for works to the Cosy Nook site located
at the Northern end of Shore Road.
The brief was to review
the existing site and the buildings upon it, review the existing use and develop
proposals for the regeneration of the site and facility.
In response to this, a presentation
was made to the board and Ellis Brown Architects were commissioned to further develop
The Cosy Nook site is a
well-known beach front venue that has in the past served beach users and
promenade visitors alike for years gone by. The client wishes to maintain and
build on this, being outlined in the brief to include that the proposal is:-
- A “go to” destination
- A Landmark – recognisable
- A year-round location
- Beach café and restaurant facilities for evenings
- Have both inside and outside space
- Create Links to the head land and the beach
- Be a “through route” as well as a destination
- Be accessible – for all.
The Existing Building
The existing structure
is one of a traditional Manx cottage style and has been subject to several
additions during its lifetime, the most prominent of these being the single-storey
flat roof rectangular area which provided additional kitchen, food preparation and
servery areas, that have sustained the use for the most recent of years.
The original structure
is 2 storey and has a split level internally which is largely set below the
level of the identified flood level. The flood map information provided by Manx
Utilities and the Department of Infrastructure identifies the area is at risk from
flooding in times of high tide / storm surge conditions.
Although 2 storeys, the
ceiling heights are very low and being split-level the existing building is
very difficult to navigate around for those with limited mobility an impossible
if wheelchair bound.
There are no WC facilities
within the building, toilets are currently provided by an external toilet block.
This block is a later addition and again has accessibility issues with no disabled
or baby change facilities.
The proposal looks to
provide a facility that can add to the local environment and provide additional
facilities to the busy beach area and foreshore of Port Erin.
The potential to retain
the building was investigated. This was done considering the local feeling to
the facility being generally very positive, as a popular and well used venue. However
following surveys, the building is in a condition that would require
considerable investment to retain. The retaining of the building also presents
significant challenges to the potential end user in that its current arrangement
is not user friendly – for either proprietor or visitors alike, particularly
those of limited mobility.
The buildings overall fitness
for purpose was considered unsuitable and couldn’t be easily adapted to suit
the proposed use of an accessible café and restaurant facility. This led to the
option to replace the building by redevelopment being further explored.
This presented an opportunity
to look at a purpose designed facility to be investigated. This purpose would
cover the use of the building and the site as a daytime beach-side venue, a facility
that could offer an extended use of an evening restaurant and be a destination
point of its own, and ultimately be a building that was accessible to all.
The challenges of the existing
services, in particular drainage, have led to the design being raised to a new
floor level which will allow the building to utilise the existing services, meeting
more acceptable and modern standards.
Raising the building also
has the added benefit of addressing the risk of tidal flooding. To further protect
the building from these risks, the front wall to the beach is proposed to be raised,
whilst still providing a view out seaward over the beach. Temporary / removable
flood barriers are proposed at the access points to the beach.
To the south of the
terrace area a ramp has been designed to afford wheelchair access to the beach.
Specifically designed wheelchairs for beach and foreshore use will be made
available. The ramp area will also include a water feature with seating, as
well as a shower area for beach users to rinse away sand and salt-water from their
time on the beach.
The proposal is to have
large areas of glazing to ensure the spectacular views of the beach and beyond
are captured, both during the day and in the evening. The views from the space internally
and the balcony will be far reaching and a real attraction to the area.
The building is proposed
to be served by a mix of Air Source Heat Pumps, Solar panels and small wind generators/
turbines which will be largely hidden from view so will provide sustainable energy
in order to maintain Port Erin Commissioners environmentally conscious approach
to the future of their property stock.
The building is proposed
to be illuminated so as to enhance the visual appearance in the evening. It
would be proposed that this is done sensitively considering neighbours.
Port Erin Commissioners
provides water bottle refill stations in the village and an additional unit is
intended to be included at the proposal site.
Vehicle charging points
are also located around the village, and an additional space and charging point
is proposed to be installed.
These add further to the
desire to have a positive impact on recycling both consumables such as plastic waste,
and minimising conventional use and promoting and assisting in electric vehicle
The proposal drawings
will be updated on Monday 16 March along with updated and additional computer-generated
Released 13 March 2020 - 6:30pm