Category: Research

Timothy Brittain-Catlin joins Historic England’s Advisory Committee

Timothy Brittain-Catlin has been appointed to Historic England’s national advisory committee. This group advises the heritage and conservation body on policy matters and casework (excluding London) where they are novel, contentious or set a precedent; it plays a key role in supporting Historic England with the intellectual, informed, balanced, long-term tools required to maintain public confidence, sometimes working on decisions which are part of a story several hundred years old. The committee is chaired by the distinguished archeologist Professor Michael Fulford CBE.

CREAte members have long-standing connections with Historic England and its predecessor English Heritage, with both Dr Brittain-Catlin and Professor Gerry Adler contributing monographs to the British C20 Architects monograph series. Dr Brittain-Catlin wrote Historic England’s Introduction to Historic Assets: 19th and 20th Century Convents and Monasteries (2016), which acts both as an authoritative statement of the heritage value of these important buildings and also as a primer for the general reader.

The appointment is made by Duncan Wilson, the chief executive of Historic England, and follows a competitive selection process.

dalby_square_margate

Climate change adaptation and intergeneration living in a heritage townhouse in Margate

CASE, alongside Thanet Council and the School of Psychology, have been working on the Dalby Square project in Margate.

The project aims to tackle climate change, an ageing population and housing shortages. The refurbishment of the heritage townhouse in Dalby Square, Margate, has now been completed and Kent County Council are seeking the tenants. The three-generation family will be part of the innovative project, where extensive monitoring will take place, to evaluate the climate change adaptation strategies, focusing on overheating, thermal comfort and energy performance, while testing the concept of multi-generation living. The team was interviewed for the BBC news for the south-east last autumn.

At the end of the project, a ‘Sustainable Heritage Toolkit’ will be published to help other coastal towns across the UK.

Further information about the project can be found here and for more information about applying for the scheme, please contact Oakwood Homes on 01843 221133.

 

Dr Nikolaos Karydis: Lectures in Oxford, Athens and Paris

On Friday 11 May, Dr Karydis gave a lecture at Trinity College, University of Oxford. Entitled ‘Visualising Justinian’s Church of the Holy Apostles at Constantinople’, the lecture presented Karydis’ work on the church of the Holy Apostles, which will be published in a forthcoming Dumbarton Oaks volume. Other lectures Karydis delivered during this academic year included a paper on Early Byzantine Architecture at the Institut National de l’Histoire de l’Art in Paris (30/10/2017), and a lecture on 19th-Century, Greek Revival Architecture at the National Technical University of Athens (12/1/2018). A video recording of this lecture can be found through the following link: http://www.blod.gr/lectures/Pages/viewspeaker.aspx?SpeakerID=4982

 

Postmodern listings – A Turning Point in Building Conservation

Historic England has announced this week that a number of major postmodern buildings will receive listed building status, thus preserving this important period of British architecture for posterity. Dr Timothy Brittain-Catlin, CREAte member and deputy chairman of the Twentieth Century Society which campaigned for the change, hailed this as a major event in architectural conservation history.

Dr Brittain-Catlin said ‘The Twentieth Century Society sees this announcement as an important turning point. Many of these buildings were at serious risk, and some were already being damaged or destroyed. This decision by Historic England comes as a result of a long campaign by the Society to draw attention to the monuments of British postmodernism and the risk they are at. We were the first to organise a major symposium on the issue, we made a presentation at the RIBA with a group of highly influential speakers, and we have organised walking tours and sell-out lectures to spread the word. It is important when making the case to protect buildings that show that there is wide public interest in them.

‘We won an important battle to protect James Stirling’s No 1, Poultry in the City of London from mutilation, and this latest decision shows that we were in the vanguard of the movement to protect Britain’s best postmodern heritage.

‘We supported the successful campaign to protect Sir Terry Farrell’s Comyn Ching development in 2016. KSA and the CREAte research centre value very greatly our connection with Sir Terry and we are delighted to be playing this an active role.’

Architectural historians Elain Harwood and Geraint Franklin from Historic England recently published their book on post-modern buildings in Britain in collaboration with the Twentieth Century society.

Image: Dr Timothy Brittain-Catlin, Charles Jencks’ Thematic House has been listed at Grade I.

Sustainable Museums through the reuse of historic building services

Dr Henrik Schoenefeldt has been invited to speak about his current research project at the UK Spring Conference of the International Association of Museum Facilities Administrators (IAMFA), which is held at the Natural History Museum, London, on 3 – 4 May 2018. For the full list of speakers, see here.

He will be taking part in the main plenary session entitled‚ ‘The Technology Challenge Modernising Estates’ Systems‘. The event will be attended by 70 delegates, which include facilities managers from most major museums in the UK and Henrik will be will be exploring how findings of his current research project at the Houses of Parliament could be used to address questions of sustainability in historic museum buildings. The project investigates how far historic principles of ventilation could be reutilised and integrated within a modern sustainable system. As many museum buildings from the nineteenth and early twentieth-century followed similar approaches to ventilation and as such the research can offer potential lessons for their refurbishment. Can the reuse of historic principles provide an alternative to the installation of completely new technologies?

Former MArch Student publishes paper in Health Environments Research and Design Journal

Former MArch student, Megan Catt, has published her paper, ‘The Reality of Wellbeing-Focused Design in Dementia Care – A Case Study of Acute Dementia Wards in the UK’ in the Health Environments Research and Design Journal (HERD), a USA based journal, supported by Kent School of Architecture’s Dr Giridharan Renganathan.

The paper studies the design of dementia wards in NHS hospitals, looking at wellbeing-focused design, an approach that considers the effects of the built environment on an occupant’s physical and psychological health. Dementia is a pressing health concern in the UK, with a high psychological care requirement. The potential for the built environment to reduce the impact of symptoms is significant, with an established body of research proving that by making even small adjustments to spatial design (with considerations for light, sound, quality of space, promoting social interaction and independence, maintaining privacy and dignity and triggering memories) improvements to patient health and care outcomes can be achieved, such as reducing falls, time spent in hospital, or blood pressure and stress. Design concepts for achieving these and other health improvements were analysed in the paper, and compiled into a framework of criteria that could be used to test for evidence of a ‘good’ dementia environment. The framework was used in several case studies, at wards which had recently undergone wellbeing-driven refurbishments. The observations, staff interviews, and testing against the framework, carried out during these visits highlighted successes and failures of the projects, showing where further progression is required in the creation of wards that passively assist health.

The research for this paper was originally undertaken for Megan’s MArch dissertation at KSA, where she looked at the design of wards for both dementia and maternity patients, two very different patient groups, each with specific psychological care needs. Since graduating in 2016, Megan has continued her research into the subject, focusing on design for dementia, with continued support from Giridharan Renganathan, who has helped me to develop the paper for publishing.

Timothy Brittain-Catlin joins the Azrieli Global Studio

Amélie Savoie-Saumure, Matt Breton-Honeyman and Pascale Julien in front of their joint project ‘All at Sea’.

On 19 April, Dr Timothy Brittain-Catlin joined a review of work from the Azrieli Global Studio at the Peter Guo-hua Fu School of Architecture at McGill University in Montreal. The Studio, funded by the Azrieli Foundation, is a collaboration between McGill and Carleton Universities in Canada, and the Technion and Tel Aviv University in Israel, and brings together MArch students from both countries to explore extreme environments through intensive research and design projects.

McGill students presented their work on sites around the Dead Sea and Negev Desert at a crit in Montreal just before their Israeli partners set off for the far north of Canada. Dr Brittain-Catlin reviewed their projects in a panel with project tutor Professor Howard Davies; School Director, Professor Martin Bressani; Mary-Jean Eastman, principal and founding partner of the global New York architectural practice Perkins Eastman; and architect Henry Tong. Associate Professor Aaron Sprecher and Tom Shaked of the Technion and Dan Shapira of Tel Aviv University also attended.

Alexander Bove presented the McGill team’s research findings.

The partnership between KSA and McGill goes back to 2010 when Dr Brittain-Catlin first joined Professor Bressani’s students for postgraduate seminars on nineteenth-century gothic revival architecture. With Professor Emeritus Jan de Maeyer of KU Leuven, they published Gothic Revival Worldwide: A.W.N. Pugin’s Global Influence last year.

Dr Brittain-Catlin joined a crit panel the following day to review projects from the vertical MArch / Stage 3 studio led by the renowned Quebec architect Gilles Saucier, whose practice Saucier + Perrotte won this year’s Gold Medal of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada.

Lydia Liang and Harriet Strachan present their project based on desalination pools
Featured Image: Professor Howard Davies; Dr Timothy Brittain-Catlin; Mary-Jean Eastman, principal and founding partner of the global New York architectural practice Perkins Eastman; architect Henry Tong; and Professor Martin Bressani.

Historic Building Services in Education, Practice and Research

A symposium held at the Chartered Institute of Building Services Engineers (CIBSE) on 25 July 2018

Historic principles of environmental design has received renewed interest amongst practitioners, teachers and academic researchers. This interest is driven by the belief that these principles could provide valuable lessons for modern practice. Moreover, knowledge of historic building services can be important to engineers working within the field of building conservation.

The symposium, ‘Historic building services in education, practice and research‘ aims to to explore the value of studying historic building services and how it can inform the practice and education of building services engineers today.

Through talks and discussions the event will provide a forum for practitioners, engineers and educators to investigate these questions. Speakers and panel chairs include Professor Dean Hawkes, University of Cambridge, Dr Neil Sturrock, Chairman of CIBSE Heritage Group, Caroline Cattini, Historic England, Phil Jones, Chairman of CIBSE CHP & District Heating Group, Dr Henrik Schoenefeldt, University of Kent, Andrew More, Senior Building Services Engineer, Historic England.

Dr Henrik Schoenefeldt, convenor of the symposium, will also present the findings of his recent study on the views of practicing engineers regarding the value of research into historic building services. This was based on interviews and a survey that he has undertaken in connection with his National Teaching Fellowship Award.

Please book via Eventbrite.

For further information about the event, including the programme, please see CIBSE Services Symposium. If you have any queries, please email C.Malkin@kent.ac.uk.

Convenor

Dr Henrik Schoenefeldt is Senior Lecturer in Sustainable Architecture at the University of Kent, AHRC Leadership Fellow and member of the CIBSE Heritage Group. He is currently seconded to the Houses of Parliament to lead the research project ,Between Heritage and Sustainability – Restoring the Palace of Westminster’s nineteenth-century ventilation system’. Last year he has been made a National Teaching Fellow for his contribution to sustainability in architectural education. His work on the historic building services at the Houses of Parliament has been subject of feature article in the CIBSE Journal: http://portfolio.cpl.co.uk/CIBSE/201711/24/

MASE students present at Cambridge Conference

Seven students from the MSc in Architecture and Sustainable Environment presented papers at the 5th Annual Conference of the Construction History Society, which was held at Queens College, Cambridge on 6 and 7 April 2018. The focus of this year’s conference was on the history of building services and its relationship to the development of construction technology. It was an international conference with delegates from countries across the world, including Australia, US, Switzerland, Germany, Belgium, Bulgaria, Sweden and France.

The students’ papers were based on research they have undertaken in the context of the module AR828 Rediscovery under the supervision of Dr Henrik Schoenefeldt. It is a specialist module on the history of environmental technologies within the MSc. In this modules students undertake research in the history of building services, which included  detailed case studies on the original environmental principles underlying the design of historic buildings.

The conference gave students the opportunity to gain important skills required in academic research, such as the writing of papers, going through the peer-review process, speaking to larger audiences about their work or taking part in plenary discussions, which involved dealing with critical comments or challenges questions from delegates or panel chairs.

Cover of Conference Proceedings

Seven peer-reviewed papers were published in ‚Studies in the History of Services and Construction, The Proceedings of the Fifth Conference of the Construction History Society, Queen‘s College, Cambridge, 6-8 April  2018 (Cambridge: CHS, 2018)

The engagement of students in the conference forms part of initiatives that Dr Schoenefeldt has been leading in conjunction with his National Teaching Fellowship Award and ‚Between Heritage and Sustainability‘, a research project funded through the Arts and Humanities Research Council.

Dr Schoenefeldt giving opening keynote lecture at Queen’s College, Cambridge

Dr Schoenefeldt gave the opening keynote lecture of the conference and acted as chair the main building services stream.  His lecture, which was entitled ‚Towards a History of Building Services’ explored the relationship between construction and building services in the design of the Palace of Westminster.