University of Sheffield - Third Year 08-09

Mike Slade - A Smoker's Retreat
Mike Slade - A Smoker's Retreat
Frank Chan
Frank Chan
Bryony Spottiswoode
Bryony Spottiswoode
Bryony Spottiswoode 002
Bryony Spottiswoode 002
Project date
  • Architecture
Yorkshire and the Humber
University of Sheffield
Associated team members
Associated documents

This year we ran two projects with 3rd Year students from the University of Sheffield. Both projects explored strategies for engaging in the social, economic and physical environments of Nottingham and Liverpool. The briefs care included below.

Semester 1: Alleyway Tactics

Nottingham is unique amongst the core cities in retaining its Medieval character. Limits on the city’s expansion up until the mid 19th century mean that buildings from all periods of the city’s growth sit cheek by jowl in the dense core of the city.

Nottingham’s alleyways are a legacy of its Medieval past. The deep medieval blocks of the old city were opened up by narrow alleyways. These are often built over on the main street frontages and form narrow canyons through the blocks. Today the alleyways encompass a variety of spaces. In the heart of the city certain alleyways have active frontages and are home to specialist shops and cafes but the majority are pedestrian cuts with blank frontages. Some are now dead ends while others have been gated or built over illustrating how the benefits of these alleyways can be lost over time. This is especially relevant as Nottingham City Council do not have a clear strategy for their future use.

Through the project we will map the alleyways to develop an understanding of the alleyway condition. We will then develop proposals that explore the potential of the alleyways to accommodate facilities that, due to a number of reasons, are often pushed to the periphery of both the city and society.

Participating Students Nicola Beer Franky Chan Conrad-Vincent Cherniavsky Todd Courtney Sukhjeet Dhillon Lizzie Dodwell Richard Fennell Meridith Hull Debor Kombi Joiner Sophie Kennerley Semeli Kyriacou Robin Leonard Matthew Martinkovic Jonathan Orlek Michael Slade Xiaochen Zhang

Semester 2: Hidden Threads

‘In an urban society everything connects, each person’s needs are fed by the skills of many others. Our lives are woven together in a fabric, but the connections that make society strong also make it vulnerable.’1

[1] Threads, (DVD) Written by Barry Hines, Produced and Directed by Mike Jackson. Originally produced and broadcast by BBC 2 in 1984. ‘A shockingly realistic account of global nuclear war and its horrific aftermath’ BBC Worldwide Ltd. (2005)

Laid out in the eighteenth century, during a very wealthy period in the history of Liverpool, the Ropewalks area takes its name from the rope walk's which used to run through the area serving the sailing ships of the time. Over time the area became a fashionable residential area for wealthy merchants and towards the end of the nineteenth century it was one of the most exclusive shopping areas outside London. With the decline of the port this area became run down and derelict.

Today the Ropewalk’s is in a process of transition. Recent new development currently sits hand in hand with many of the original warehouses and buildings. Through the duration of this project we will reveal and explore the multiplicity of different threads flowing through and around the ropewalks. Individual projects will focus on the hidden and often unspoken aspects of society.

Participating Students Anna Apostolova Hannah Baker Benjamin Baliti Rebecca Cunningham Ishan Hassan Matthew Hung Judit Laczik Shunglong Li Karolina Mazur Katherine Meaney Lena Pozdnyakova Craig Shanley Mohammad Shujah Bryony Spottiswoode Rob Taylor Helen Wakefield

Project blog