Saltholme Pools Hide

The Saltholme Pools Hide has been retrofitted and extended beyond recognition. Once a dilapidated and unwelcoming space, it has been refurbished and a new observation tower inserted into the middle of the circular building. The Hide now provides Stockton-on-Tees with a landmark location which attracts many new visitors of all ages, as well as wildlife.

The uninteresting circular breeze-block and steel framed building has been transformed into a beautifully bright space. A new rooflight floods the entire Hide with light, while windows at varying heights have been added to cater for its adult and child audiences, as well as an uninterrupted 360◦ panoramic view at the second storey – accessed by a timber spiral staircase.

The use of dark stained timber cladding on the exterior and a green roof helps the building perfectly blend into its surroundings. This is in stark contrast with its interior which uses exposed glulam and birch plywood to add a touch of warmth and adds to the brightness of the space. 

Sensitive landscaping to the pools themselves increases accessibility to the building and offers an improved habitat for the local birds and wildlife. The Saltholme Pools Hide project was achieved with a tight budget and a tight programme, scheduled to complete within only a few months to avoid bird breeding seasons.

Completed 2019.

Project Information




Child Graddon Lewis




Jim Stephenson


Civic Trust Award, Highly Commended 2021