The renovation of the space at Áras Cairnes required the flexibility for the room to be used as a learning space for the School of Law and as a Moot court room.

The room was stripped back and its original cornicing, architrave, sash windows and their richly detailed surrounds were all restored.

All new additions were designed of materials and character befitting of the function. A collection of natural oak panelled furniture pieces were added, which included a lectern/ witness stand, Judges bench, and senior counsel’s table. Oak panelling wraps around the entire room below the datum of the window cills (this also serves to conceal the existing heating pipework and radiators on the perimeter of the room), embracing the original stone fireplace and culminating in a tall unit that forms the backdrop to the Judge’s bench. This tall unit appears a solid form and yet delicate joinery allows for two large AV screens housed within to be revealed to the room when necessary.

One of the primary goals of the AV upgrade was to provide AV capabilities that support simulated courtroom activities including hybrid video conference communication, as well as traditional single classroom instruction., it was also essential for a tutor at the lectern (witness stand) to be able to address students seated in the gallery, so the room could operate as a traditional classroom

 Architects: Axo Architects

Photograph: Sean McMahon