The John Francis Basset for Wetherspoon
Evoking both the Victorian opulence and industrial hardiness of Camborne’s 19th Century tin mining heyday, Absolute created the interior of the town’s JD Wetherspoon pub – The John Francis Bassett – located in Market House, a Grade II-listed former civic building that was built in the 1860s. Named after the one of the most prosperous members of a local mining dynasty, the new venue is the result of a £1.3 million pound redevelopment project by the national pub operator.
To reflect the area’s heritage in a creative, quirky way while maintaining an elegant, classic feel, Absolute mixed strong and immediately apparent elements such as polished stonework and industrial –style light fixtures with subtle idiosyncrasies such as pick-axe handle door fittings and wall-mounted miners’ hard hats. The extravagance of John Francis Bassett is hinted at in aspects such as the period furniture which graces the main bar area and the thick frame bathroom mirrors, while historical imagery and tin and copper detailing adds to the factual appeal. Along with pressed tin ceiling tiles, a series of mining-related motifs appear overhead while bespoke feature wallpaper and upholstery forms the backdrop for a series of snug zones overlooking a central raised space.
“The John Francis Bassett project was quite a departure for us,” says Creative Director Helen Stephens. “This was our first project for JD Wetherspoon so it was an exciting collaborative effort to ensure that our design work fitted with exactly what they wanted to achieve. Each of their venues has a unique character and with the Camborne Wetherspoon it was important that we encapsulated aspects of the area’s history in a way that would appeal to both locals and visitors. We wanted to avoid any tackiness or overly sentimental aspects and instead focus on creating a high quality multi-layered interior that would pay tribute to the historical side of things in a fresh way while retaining the functionality of the space. Camborne’s mining history is very close to the hearts of local people so we hope we’ve created a space that the town can be really proud of.”