Our waiting area called “Svalbard” is a Viking longhouse-style building which was designed to complement the existing Scandinavian complex. It is named after the island archipelago north of Norway and beautifully reflects the “natural place” ethos of Roucan Loch.
Svalbard is the summer home of the Barnacle Geese who winter here on the Solway and often visit Roucan Loch. The geese theme continues inside the waiting room with flying geese engraved onto the windows and the poem “Something told the wild geese it was time to go” by Rachel Field, etched on a wooden plaque.
“Svalbard” means “a land at the end of the ocean”, in old Norse. In the depths of a Scottish winter, we feel this could bring comfort to a lot of people who have lost someone. The flight of the geese may be symbolic of our loved ones who are no longer with us, resting in a land at the end of the ocean.
The waiting area enhances Roucan Loch and will provide a bright and welcoming place for people needing a coffee after a long journey.
Svalbard serves not only as a very practical building where families are encouraged to gather before a service, but also as a shelter from the strong winds, rain and the snow of winter. It is also possible to view our many garden birds and red squirrels feeding, as Svalbard can also act as a bird hide and has a nest box camera with viewing screen installed.