Big Parks Project, Peacehaven

The idea for the Big Parks Project was created in 2011. It’s aim was to improve and add to the recreational and leisure facilities in Peacehaven. The project provided improved sports facilities, a skate park, an activity hub with café and recreation areas. The park is part of the South Downs National Park and encourages visitors to explore the countryside.

HOP worked alongside Kaner Olette Architects to provide new facilities and refurbish the existing buildings. As well as structural alterations, this project required Civil Engineering works, which included new drainage and the design of access routes. The park location is of archaeological interest, so the café was designed to showcase some of the artefacts discovered at the site.

An existing maintenance facility was converted into a gateway café building for the park. The upgrading works to this building included removing the existing roof structure and replacing it with new steelwork frames and timber rafters, which formed an open vaulted ceiling in the café area.

The existing Community Pavilion was refurbished and given a new entrance canopy and porch. These were provided by a steel frame constructed on new strip foundations. The existing entrance porch was removed to allow for the construction of these new features.



The Big Parks Project was awarded for excellent design at the South East England RIBA Regional Awards 2016.

It was also selected as a Regional Finalist for the Civic Trust Awards 2018.

Other Awards

  • Constructing Excellence Awards 2015, winner of the Sustainability Category.
  • Architect Journal Retrofit Awards 2015, winner of the Leisure Category.
  • Sussex Heritage Trust, Public and Community Award 2016, Highly Commended.
  • Campaign to Protect Rural England, Sussex Countryside Awards, winner in the Making Places Design category.
  • Royal Visit – 15th April 2015.


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