A new shelter has been built at a plantation in Onchan.

The Conrhenny Shelter - Kemmyrk Choan Rhennee – is in Conrhenny Community Woodland.

One of the organisations behind it, Culture Vannin, says it ‘provides a space to connect with the biodiversity all around us whilst celebrating the value of arts and culture within the natural environment’.

The winning design, chosen by a panel of judges, comes from architects Betty Laurincova and Michal Kotvan, and boasts spectacular views out over Douglas.Betty Laurincova said: ‘The environment was in focus during the design and construction phase.

‘We used locally and sustainably sourced timber cut to exact measurements by the Department of the Environment’s Food and Agriculture’s St John’s Sawmill, and ground screws to preserve the existing terrain as much as possible.

‘Pioneer Carpentry and Construction did an outstanding job putting together the puzzle pieces of this unique structure.’ 

Conrhenny shelter

The open-front design of the shelter is said to ‘echo’ the forest that surrounds it, ‘providing the perfect place to pause and contemplate your surroundings’.

Conrhenny is popular with walkers, cyclists and families. The design incorporates a viewing platform and a bench and a game for younger visitors.

They can search for the North Star on the dome, and for five wooden creatures and their houses hidden in the forest around.

Betty Laurincova with the Conrhenny Shelter

The animal and star sculptures were made by Henry Neville Wood.

A short film interview with Betty Laurincova made by Brook Wassall for Culture Vannin has been released to coincide with the announcement.

The Conrhenny Shelter was developed as part of the National Development Strategy for Culture and the Arts, with Culture Vannin, Isle of Man Arts Council and the Department for Environment, Food and Agriculture working together.