Pews and Perches: third edition

Location: The Royal Docks
Date: 2022
Status: Temporary
Project Types: Street furniture
Client: The Royal Docks

For the LFA 2022, we launched the third edition of the Pews and Perches competition in partnership with the Royal Docks, which invited architecture and design students, recent graduates and emerging practitioners to share their unique perspective on sustainability within the Docks through the design of a bench that actively engaged its users and the visitors to the Docks. Five winning designs were selected to be installed at various locations in the Royal Docks and remain in place for one year. 


What-A Water Waste! by Leroy Yuen and Gemma Louisa Holdaway with support from ReCyrcle, Grymsdyke Farm and Absence from Island.

Pews and Perches 2022 © Luke O’Donovan

Location: Royal Victoria Dock Floating Garden What-A Water Waste! is a public bench made from community HPDE plastic waste. The bench stands as a socio-cultural sculptural piece that aims to represent how we can all come together to act against the current climate emergency. Collected from the Royal Docks and the surrounding local area, the plastic waste has been transformed into unique plastic sheets that read as a map of waste traces, rightly indicating the act of coming together across communities to find new circular ways of designing.  

GAM By Fiona Hartley and James Parkes, with thanks to Made CNC

Pews and Perches 2022 © Luke O’Donovan

Location: Connaught Crossing (South Side) GAM is a modular bench that takes cues from nearby manmade infrastructure. The bench transforms typically overlooked objects of industrial architecture to create approachable objects for interaction. GAM references, replicates, and reuses the industrial and weathered materiality of its location through a layered papercrete construction formed from wastepaper collected from surrounding locations.  

A Cautionary Bench/Mark by Andre Kong Studio, with support from Andrew Tan, Daniel Meier and the learners at UTC

Pews and Perches 2022 © Luke O’Donovan

Location: London Design and Engineering UTC A Cautionary Bench/Mark is built from reclaimed materials and is set on two levels. The lower bench invites passers-by to sit and reflect on the individual and collective actions that will lead to the higher-level looming 2.6m above – the water level expected during a severe tidal storm in 2030. The red gradient of the bench, reminiscent of a change in colour caused by cumulative water level marks and highlighting the increasing risk, reinforces the urgency to act on the climate crisis now or never.  

Sail-Phone by Lo² (Alcina and Benjamin Lo) with thanks to Adam Bodnar

Pews and Perches 2022 © Luke O’Donovan

Location: Royal Victoria Garden Aspiring to capture the vibrancy and rich history of the Royal Docks, the shape of Sail-Phone is an abstract take on the Lightship ‘LV95’ of Trinity Buoy Wharf with its iconic bright red paint. With its multifunctional use as a bench and with an interactive speaking tube, reminiscent of those used to communicate on ships, Sail-Phone‘s captivating appearance and multi-functional use aims to bring everyone together, engaging in playfulness and to have fun outdoors.  

The Turning Tide by Mvuu, with support from Odace Engineering and ZedWorks

Pews and Perches 2022 © Luke O’Donovan

Location: Thames Barrier Park The Turning Tide aims to symbolize the forever fluctuating effect that actions cause, with the structure ‘shifting’ from one state to another. Stones scribed with community messages of climate change anchor down the bench, signifying that action will never be without effect.

Related Media

Meet the Designers: Pews and Perches (3)

Meet the Designers: Pews and Perches (3)

As part of LFA 2022, the LFA unveiled the winning benches for the third edition of Pews and Perches. The…


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