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Competition: Saving Hamilton Mausoleum

Geograph 4700182 by robert murray
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The Glasgow Institute of Architects has launched a contest for ideas to rethink the Category A-listed Hamilton Mausoleum

Open to everyone, the competition seeks bold visions to restore and convert the landmark 1858 structure, which was originally constructed as a family tomb for the Dukes of Hamilton but is now in a state of disrepair and closed to the public.

The call for concepts is backed by the Hamilton Mausoleum Trust and aims to unlock the full re-use potential of the David Bryce-designed mausoleum and a nearby keeper’s lodge for the ‘cultural benefit of future generations’. The overall winner will receive a £1,000 prize.

According to the brief: ‘This competition seeks ideas for the re-imagining of the Mausoleum and Keeper’s Lodge and connections to the Low Parks masterplan. The buildings have potential for use as events space, exhibition space, or an interpretation centre for local history, but there are no limits on the potential use you can propose.

‘Ideas are welcomed that consider the mausoleum, lodge and their setting holistically with an emphasis on benefits to the town of Hamilton and its local community. The Mausoleum is now in the care of South Lanarkshire Council and until recently was open to the public for tours. The Mausoleum is in a state of disrepair with water ingress threatening further deterioration.’

Hamilton Mausoleum was constructed in 1858 by the 10th Duke of Hamilton, whose wife, Susan Beckford, inherited the art collection amassed by her ancestors through their ownership of sugar plantations in Jamaica. The tomb was originally part of the Hamilton Palace estate. However the palace was demolished in 1921 and the surrounding land is now used for sports fields.

The open call comes two years after the Glasgow Institute of Architects held an ideas contest to imagine how the city will look in 150 years’ time. The contest was won by the architectural designer Craig Higgins whose winning concept Look Down focused on the plight of homeless people in the city.

The latest contest seeks ideas to restore and convert the historic structure, which is clearly visible from Scotland’s busy M74 motorway. The 37m-tall Roman-style domed structure features a central oculus and unique acoustic properties, including a 15-second echo.

Submissions should feature up to six images and a 1,000-word written description of the concept. Judges will include Glasgow industrial heritage expert John Hume; Judi Keith-Brown, president of the New Zealand Institute of Architects; and GIA president Phil Zoechbauer.

The overall winner, to be announced on 30 September, will receive a £1,000 prize, while a second prize of £500 and third prize of £250 will also be awarded. Registration costs £10 for students, £20 for RIAS members, and £25 for non-RIAS members.

The deadline for applications is 4 September.

How to apply

Visit the competition website for more information

Contact details

Email: communications@gia.org.uk

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