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Identity Crisis- Who am I? Museum of Berwick-Upon-Tweed

Part 1 Project 2015
Mohammed Mahdi
Sheffield Hallam University Sheffield UK
Are we English or are we Scottish? NEITHER! WE ARE BERWICKERS!
Sitting just outside the historic walls of the town, the Quayside has been the victim of neglect by the defensive Berwickers. The design takes the concept of the defensive walls and cuts it into the land to release and defend itself from the chains of an unwanted ownership. Further inspired by the turbulent history of Berwick, the proposed design translates the timeline of Berwick’s thirteen changes-of-hand between Scotland and England into a three-dimensional storytelling tool, told through the ranging intervals of glass and stone that span the length of the buildings external walls. The museums narrow and skewed form takes cues from the industrial shipbuilding industry that had once flourished on the Quayside, specifically regarding the slipway that had once been a fundamental part of the site. The narrow plan ensures the building performs efficiently, promoting and aiding natural ventilation and daylight. In enhancing the museums purpose, the buildings walls feature stone reliefs that tell the story of the town, visible from even across the estuary. The result is a building that Berwickers feel connected to through their similar identity and thus march forward together with a new voice.

Mohammed Mahdi


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