We are at a tipping point.

The time to act on the climate emergency is now, before it’s too late.

Sinking House is a message of warning, and hope, to communities across the world – including leaders gathering at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) – to address the issues, reach for lifelines and act now against the intensifying threat of climate change.

The warnings are all around us.

Climate change is being accelerated by our actions.

Hope for the future requires positive action.

We can take inspiration from community action. Be that from global leaders or grass roots movements. COP26 should be a lifeline to all of us as we face potentially devastating changes to the way we live.

The installation

Placed in one of the most iconic locations in Bath, Sinking House appeared semi-submerged and at a tipping point between Pulteney Weir and Pulteney Bridge. On the chimney, a human-like figure held a lifeline which reads ‘COP26’.

Located in a seemingly perilous location just above the turbulent weir the house’s vulnerability and that of the figure on top represents the dangerous position we have put ourselves in today with climate change. The piece highlights the need for immediate action to avoid devastating consequences.

The built environment

Sinking House coincided with the closing of our Climate Action Relay, an 8 week programme to provoke and inspire collaborative action across the built environment, and we hope Sinking House does the same.

We can’t escape the fact that the built environment is a major contributor to global CO2 emissions. But we can agree that more can be done by those who shape this industry to join forces to reduce our negative impact on people and planet.

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Making it happen

Sinking House was led by Stride Treglown and Format Engineers, with artist Anna Gillespie and Fifield Moss Carpentry.

We worked with local tradespeople to help build the sculpture. This helped to minimise transport emissions and keep the installation as sustainable as possible.

It took an entire community of local people and organisations to make happen. Special thanks goes to Bath and North East Somerset Council, The Environment Agency, City of Bath Sea Cadets, Greenman Environmental Management, Bridge Coffee Shop, Sydenhams, Kellaway Building Supplies, Minuteman Press, RIBA, Wessex Water, Architecture Is.

Meet the makers

Rob Delius

Sarah Perry

Lloyd Evans

Anna Gillespie

Sam Fifield Moss

End of Life

Sinking House was removed from the river after a two-week residency. The floating pontoon was gratefully returned to the City of Bath Sea Cadets. The house was carefully dismantled and the timber re-fashioned into an animal shelter on a small holding in Bath.