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RCA Interior Design students imagine what a post-Brexit pub might look like

While the future of Brexit is unknown, Royal College of Art MA Interior Design students have imagined what a post-Brexit pub might look like in a project exploring ‘inhabitations’. The first year students were asked to speculate on what the pub – a British institution for national ritual and resolution – might become post-Brexit.

‘The quintessential British pub has been around for more than 1,000 years. The story of British culture has played out in and around these public houses, shaping our society, our arts and politics, as well as helping develop a particular sense of humour,’ Visiting Lecturer Steve Jensen said.

‘Should the post-Brexit pub reflect a new direction for British culture or should it remain as always? Those are the questions we really wanted students to interrogate and answer through their designs.’

On the project, Head of Interior Design, Graeme Brooker said: ‘The remit of the inhabitations project, is to challenge our students to spatialise current issues. This project provokes reflection upon one of our favourite public spaces, and how politics can shape the design of its interior.’

Discover a selection of projects below:

Marionette by Muyang Tang

Muyang Tang's Marionette
Marionette by Muyang Tang

Who is pulling the strings when it comes to Brexit?

The design of this pub is inspired by the concept of ‘marionette’ and symbolises the public’s relationship during the decision-making process of Brexit. The bar controls the whole three floors through the beer pipes installation, which connects the barrels under the bar on the top floor to the existing columns in other floors. Each column serves one type of beer, and divide customers into different groups, thus make customers become ‘marionettes’ controlled by beer.

Commercial by Yelun Kim

Yelun Kim's Commercial.
Commercial by Yelun Kim

Colours and space constantly shift

The pub’s central focus is on a coloured glass mezzanine space with a long ramp. By removing infilled existing windows on the top floor, customers can see the outside and have a new experience on the terrace. During day time, natural light comes through the gradient coloured sitting area and reflects the whole space with people's moving shadows. At night, mirrors, surrounded on the main bar creates the atmosphere of the open space more vibrant.

Public House by Nichamon Deprasert


A place for all

As Theresa May gave word to strike trade deals with new friends and old allies, it would open up many possibilities for the UK to step out to the world. Public House is an uplifting civic space where people come to enjoy drinks, food and music from the rest of the world and bring up conversations and make new companions.

Beer and Bread by Xia Bi


Balancing out an unbalanced nation, with beer and bread

Brexit has brought a divided, unbalanced nation where people need to reflect on the reasons for this result – making a gamble decision in an unclear state.

As a post-Brexit pub, Beer & Bread's brewing floor uses local underground water and materials. The spent grains are baked into healthy bread, making the clear self-sufficient sustainable recycling system an inspiration for the new British society.

Game of Two Halves by Xijin Zeng

Xijin Zeng
A Games of Two Halves by Xijin Zeng

A space to unite the community

Initially Xijin was inspired by the uncomfortable and stressful feelings brought on by Brexit but decided to create space that unifies people. The concept of this pub is a place where people can get together with family, friends and play, where they can relax. The third floor opens at different times, and if you stay, you can experience hours of fun.




Find out more about the Interior Design Programme and how to apply.