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In pictures: Kingston University students construct timber spire

Third year architecture students built a replica timber spire at Ecobuild

Architecture students at Kingston University have built a timber spire as part of a project working with UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

The 1:5 scale replica of Salisbury Cathedral’s spire was displayed at Ecobuild, constructed using sustainably sourced timber from Scotland.

Salisbury Cathedral’s original stone spire has load bearing stone walls with a complex timber frame structure allowing access for maintenance of the stone work internally. The project is an interpretation of the original stone spire, with the structure changed to allow it to stand up without an outer stone wall.

The spire was designed as a temporary installation and thus specific connection details which allow it to be disassembled had to be developed.

‘The spire was constructed primarily for temporary installations, with the view that it could be assembled in many places, many times’ says architecture lecturer Takeshi Hayatsu.

He added: ‘It is our intention that installing the spire will become an event adapting to each unique situation and condition.’

Inspiration for the construction of the spire came from the wooden festival float at the Gion Matsuri festival in Kyoto, where a similar timber spire was raised using a lever pulled with ropes.

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