2018 - click > to browse thumbnails - click pictures to browse images full size

Clifton Campus

We were given a presentation explaining the history of the campus and the development of the current cluster of buildings.
Some older buildings in the centre of the campus that were no longer fit for purpose and were restricting movement on-site had to be demolished to make way for the new Pavillion building.
The façade was ingeniously articulated by a series of  rectangular spaces providing fully serviced study cubicles inside the building and sheltered places to socialise outside.
The distinctive low concrete arches of the roof line reminded some members of the architecture in Isfahan.
We entered a light and airy building that was being used by groups of students for socialising and study. It was an exciting space, but the atmosphere was relaxed, quiet and workmanlike.
Evans Vettori had cleverly linked the pavillion seamlessly to the existing refectory, inserting clerestory windows above the eating area to give a greater feeling of light and space.
The existing library was treated to  a glazed extension which improved circulation, linking it more clearly with the Pavillion and providing a dry route in bad weather.
 

 Modern furnishings were a major factor in humanising the large spaces and giving it an exciting feel. All soft furnishings were covered in pure wool sourced from the Isle of Bute.

Furniture was used in a variety of groupings to satisfy a range of student activities. This continued in the refectory where tables, chairs and stools gave  numerous options for dining.

Rob

Derby Arena

One of only four UK indoor velodromes, Derby Arena provides not only world class cycle facilities but a useful all purpose sports and entertainment venue, especially whilst Derby Assembly Rooms are out of commission.
Sited next to Pride Park Football stadium and clad in distinctive gold, silver and bronze panels, the Arena is a striking building. Within, it provides an Olympic spec track, uniquely at first floor level allowing a very large multi-purpose ground floor, packed with children enjoying half term activities on the day of our visit.

Our very personable guides, Phil from Derby Promotions and Phil the Head Cycling Coach, gave us a thorough grounding in the attributes of the building and the intricacies of competitive cycling. The “Bike Cave” beneath the D shaped technical area was sight to behold with hundreds of track cycles available for hire.
42 Degrees is the angle of the track's steepest banking and the name of the cafe which provided a welcome cuppa before our departure. 28 degrees centigrade is the temperature at which cyclists compete so anyone intending to watch a competitive event from one of the 1,700 seats should dress in layers.
The Arena is three years old and already fully integrated into the UK network of elite cycling facilities, being well used by Olympians and Para-Olympians, evidenced by a glimpse of Team GB members briefing in one of the seminar rooms.

Richard and Alison.


 
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