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The Collective Memory of Pow Dene (Augmented Distillery)

Part 2 Project 2012
Matt Drury
Northumbria University Newcastle | UK
Derived from extensive historical research into Pudding Chare and its proximities, the thesis is derived from the collective memory of the site, recollecting forgotten memories from the sites past to inform a new narrative through re-interpretation and adaptation.

Selected memories of former architecture, inhabitants and events are re-layered, to re-instate a nexus of forgotten spaces which have became lost amongst the dense urban fabric of the city.

The distillery reprises the role of a former spirit merchant and distiller, Mr Samuel Stokoe, whose premises formerly occupied the site during the 19th century. A reinterpretation of Stokoes spirit cellar uncovers the culverted Pow Dene which runs below the streets course, providing freshwater for the production of the whisky. The role of the public house is reinstated along the Chare in the form of a whisky bar whilst an abandoned warehouse is reused to provide an exhibition space and artisan distillery which references the former illicit distillers of the site.

Through adaptation, the distillery recollects the former architecture of St John’s Street which currently lies vacant as a forgotten space within Newcastle’s ‘Grainger Town’. In a conversation with the wider context of the city, the new facade is a facsimile; reminiscent of the streets neighbours and former ancestors. The thesis is a subtle re-instatement into the city; concealing the augmented process and equipment within from the eyes of the city.

Matt Drury

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