The Lighthouse and Gardens

After acquiring the IQL North site in January of 2022, Hadley appointed Mecanoo to lead the design of a sustainability-first, mixed-use development for Stratford.
Published Thu 4 Aug 2022

Leading up to development and into the foreseeable future, the site offers an amazing opportunity to engage with local residents and provide a new space for them to enjoy.

Taking inspiration from other meanwhile projects from around the world, Hadley commissioned Nomadic Gardens to create a community-focused food-growing garden.

The previous marketing suite, now known as The Lighthouse is jointly managed and co-curated by Su Winsbury and Gabby Briscoe, of The Heart to Heart Collective. It has been reimagined and is available to hire by practitioners, charities, businesses and individual classes to provide workshops and varied projects.

Recognising the importance of taking time to foster relational impact and reciprocity, this meanwhile project offers the long-term opportunity to work with the diverse community of Stratford. Through this, we can guide and inform the design process with knowledge of the real needs and desires of this vibrant part of East London.

With a focus on providing opportunities for the younger population of Newham, plans for the community gardens will see it expand and include a maker's yard with workshops and courses for all levels of experience.

In its first month alone, all of the mobile planters in the garden have become occupied by local residents keen to grow their own vegetables.

Volunteers from the Sustrans, The Tree Musketeers and Capel Manor Environmental Collage surveyed the garden for self-seeding wildflowers, helping to inform the landscape architects of the inherent biodiversity on the site. With plants and materials donated from The Chelsea Flower Show and Tate Modern, the garden is taking shape and welcoming new visitors every day.

In August, we joined forces with Get Living for their E20 summer fete. The garden was host to music, food and festivities at 'The Lighthouse Stage', alongside pop-up picnics and activities with the residents of the nearby Carpenters Estate in collaboration with Dovetail Community Centre. The vision for The Lighthouse and Gardens is to create a positive impact not only for its immediate neighbours and future residents, but for the wider area and generations to come.