Agricultural store
2021 - 2023
Photography by Studio Waltzer


Studio MASH have completed a translucent polycarbonate and timber clad barn as part of a pair of projects in the grounds of a listed house in Guernsey. Built as a store for vehicles and agricultural equipment, the barn also includes a smaller, insulated area to be used as a workshop and gym space. Whilst remaining recognisably agricultural in form and materiality, the barrel vaulted barn offers a distinctive take on the typology. The building’s materiality is humble and familiar – rusted corrugated metal, polycarbonate, sawn timber – but careful detailing has elevated the project to a notable level of refinement. The regular, repeating facade of slender vertical timbers conceals full height doors and sliding sections which open to reveal functional yet refined interior spaces with an exposed and legible structural language. Built from standard timber sections, the distinctive barrel vaulted roof is formed by bow trusses seated in doubled-up columns. A cast concrete plinth supports each column, with a ‘tongue’ of concrete rising up to meet the timber uprights. Throughout the building, junctions between materials are celebrated and the method of construction is laid bare. “We wanted to create a structural and architectural proposition which had a clear and rational language, with each material doing its job in a visible and practical way, whilst still allowing for moments of delight and architectural intrigue” Behind the timber cladding, a layer of translucent polycarbonate allows filtered daylight into the building from all directions. At night, when lit from within, the building glows with a diaphanous quality. “Despite being a humble barn, the project is characterised by theatrical transformations. In the day, with the doors closed, it appears solid and homogenous; at night this is reversed and the walls are glowing and translucent. Alternatively, if you open the large timber clad doors, a closed-up looking building becomes very open, allowing activities to spill out into the landscape around.” The exposed materials and services illustrate the no-nonsense functions of the building, while their careful arrangement and layering elevates the whole to be more than the sum of its parts. The exposed structure is designed to be adaptable, with opportunities to fix into the timber as required for storage or additional partitions. The five bay building is split into two full bays for cars and agricultural equipment – accessed through double doors – with a further half-bay for workshop space with access to a mezzanine above. The insulated gym / workshop space to the northern end opens out, by means of a sliding timber clad screen, to an external covered area, protected from the Guernsey weather. “The building needed to be a hard-working functional place to house the paraphernalia of rural family life. We applied a common sense approach to materials which allows the clients to enjoy the quality of the spaces without needing to be too precious about the building” The project is one of a pair of Studio MASH projects on the site. The practice has also converted a stone outbuilding – formerly used as a garage and artist studio – into a finely crafted two bedroom house. Both projects have been shortlisted for the Guernsey Design Awards 2024.