Alex Smith settles down to EP’s guide to the best in urban design and then intrepidly explores a site that is campaigning to save Captain Scott’s ill-fated stab at polar architecture
A couple of new websites to report this week. Both focus on great architecture, but while one glories in the buildings of the past, the other hopes to provide a blueprint for those of the future.
Those looking to deliver their share of Gordon Brown’s 3 million homes will no doubt be pointing their cursors at English Partnership’s online version of its Urban Design Compendium. The website includes all the compendium’s best-practice guidance, plus more case studies, images and web links.
Architects concerned about their Thames Gateway homes looking just like everyone else’s should visit the World Monument Fund’s (WMF) new site for inspiration and ideas. The website looks as lovingly crafted as some of the threatened buildings it champions. The best feature is the images of buildings it is seeking to save through fundraising and conservation management. Watch 100 includes some truly awe-inspiring structures, some relatively unknown, such as the Fenestrelle Fortress in Italy – the “Great Wall of the Alps”. The list also features Captain Scott’s hut on Ross Island, Antarctica (below), which contains food and gear left by the ill-fated team of explorers.
Anybody who watched the BBC’s Restoration series won’t be surprised to hear that four UK buildings made the list. They include Wiltons Music Hall in London, which was the runner-up on Restoration in 2003.
Projects funded by WMF also include the restoration of Nicholas Hawksmoor’s St George’s Bloomsbury in London. If you are wondering what it looks like now, there’s a video which includes an interview with restoration architect Molyneux Kerr. From October, WMF members will be able to access additional areas including online heritage discussions.
EP’s Urban Design Compendium: www.urbandesigncompendium.co.uk
Word Monument Fund Britain: www.wmf.org.uk