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The Wall Town Rural Craft Centre

Part 1 Project 2015
Bradley Allsop
Northumbria University Newcastle | UK
In the early twentieth century a section of Northumberlands ‘Whin Sill’, an immense crag along which Hadrians Wall runs, was blasted by quarrymen for its precious ‘Whinstone’. In the 1970’s, the 30m deep borehole left by the quarrying was in-filled with boulder clay, leaving the artificial depression struggling to flourish with ecology and vegetation due to the impermeable soil left on the site.

Through looking at Northumberlands Iron age past for inspiration, The Walltown Rural Craft Centre utilises a unique regenerating process to annually advance the biodiversity on site whilst reviving and sustaining lost regional craft through a series of traditional, seasonal, events such as coppicing, reed cultivation, thatching and green-wood working.

Through working in conjunction with the ‘National Wildlife authority’, ‘the woodland trust’ and ‘The Association of Green-wood workers and pole-lathe turners’ the Rural Craft Centre emerged into a building designed upon necessity, aiming to solve a real issue, the prevention of lost regional heritage and tradition in the North of England.

The scheme utilises aspects such as the resurrection of the ‘hearth’ and the bell tower for communal congregation, promoting regional craft by housing on-site craftsmen, their artistry and workshop spaces for traditional rural trades and craft courses.

Bradley Allsop


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