Author: CHB

Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Thames Ditton – by Brian Quinn RIBA CA

The church of Our Lady of Lourdes, Thames Ditton, is located in the shadow of Hampton Court Palace in south west London. Since 2010 the parish has been considering how best to renovate side chapels to provide a more prayerful and fitting space for the Reserved Sacrament and for the Marian shrine. In 2012, I was appointed to provide liturgical expertise and prepare proposals for consideration. The lofty strong circular concrete building dates from 1962 and accommodates a congregation of approximately three hundred and fifty. The original design was confident, of its time, and anticipated many of the liturgical...

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Elemental Living: Contemporary Houses in Nature, by Phaidon Editors (Author), Joost Grootens (Designer)

Elemental Living presents 60 works of architecture from across the 20th and 21st centuries that have a special relationship with the natural world. The book includes a visually breathtaking selection of architect-created houses that have been designed to create unparalleled views of a wide variety of natural landscapes; designed to be almost indistinguishable from the natural landscape; or designed using materials and forms found in the natural landscape. Each house demonstrates a deep concern with the creation of unique living spaces that connect their inhabitants with the forests, mountains, lakes, deserts, and oceans that have attracted humanity for millennia....

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SAVE campaign success: Competition launched to transform Perth City Hall into an arts centre

The Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS) has launched an international competition to transform Perth City Hall into a visual arts centre, hopefully securing the building’s future. The news comes three years since the Category B listed hall in central Scotland was slated for demolition, for replacement with landscaped open space. SAVE described the proposed demolition, back in 2014, as civic vandalism and strongly argued that the building was a major asset to the city, clearly capable of reuse and restoration. Following significant objections and public outcry the plans were scrapped, and Perth and Kinross Council accepted that...

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Harlech Castle investment a triumph for tourism

A £6m project to refurbish Harlech Castle has resulted in an increase of more than 35% in visitors to the UNESCO World Heritage Site The figures were revealed by Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Infrastructure, Ken Skates on a visit to the iconic site on Monday, February 6, as he officially opened a new Education Resource Centre, completed as part of the project. The improvement works were carried out by the Welsh Government’s historic environment service (Cadw) with funding from the Heritage Tourism Project (HTP), which has supported 40 historic sites across Wales since its launch in 2009. The...

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Belfast Majestic cinema saved by church in act of ‘divine intervention’

One of Belfast’s last surviving art deco style cinemas has been saved by an act of “divine intervention”, it’s been claimed. The former Majestic cinema on the Lisburn Road, one of the last remaining venues of its kind in the city, has sat empty for several years. But now it can be revealed the 80-year-old building is being refurbished and developed on behalf of the nearby Windsor Baptist Church, which will use the building as a meeting hall. No one from the church was available for comment. Belfast demolition firm Eastwood is currently gutting much of the building inside...

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