Have a Seat on Britain's Longest Bench

long bench photo

Images from AJ

This may be the world's longest bench....and even if it isn't, it sure looks like fun. Located along the beach in West Sussex, it is 324 metres (350 yards) long and could seat 300 people. Created out of thousands of slats made of reclaimed tropical hardwood, the bench dips down and around and onto the beach at different points.

The multi-coloured bench ends at the East Beach Cafe, a jewel of an eco restaurant in Littlehampton which was designed by Thomas Heatherwick. It is all part of a waterfront redevelopment plan for the sadly neglected South Coast.

bench swirl photo

As part of the project's funding, individuals could 'buy' slats on the bench, and include a special message so it is engraved with hundreds of personal messages from supporters. Funding was also received by a capital grants project for seaside regeneration. Interestingly, a contribution to the project was made by Gordon Roddick, husband of Anita of Body Shop fame.

hot seat photo

Image from Studio Weave

Created by Studio Weave, the bench design allows for an extension at a later date and it could reach up to 612m in length, seating 800 people and becoming the longest bench in the world.

The colour interspersed along the length emphasizes the wiggles and bends. The color scheme changes from pink, yellow and orange at the east to blue, purple and green at the west much like the the sky from dawn to dusk. The support structure for the bench is made from stainless steel which is approximately 70 percent recycled.

shelter bench photo

Two shelters from the wind and rain were also included along the route. School children were consulted on what they would like to see and they all agreed that the existing shelters were dirty and unsafe. These new ones are like "charms in the bracelet" and have become an architectural feature. They are made out of bronze and frame the views of the sea.

More on Littlehampton Redevelopment

How the Seaside Got Sexy
RIBA Awards Shortlisted

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